Here we are in the third day of #twentysixteen and I’m ready to tackle truly living my life on purpose! I am on a journey and I am certain that God is orchestrating newness for my future as I seek him and block out the world. Not because I don’t need support but because I don’t want to deal with those who don’t understand what it means and requires to truly following Christ. It will not make sense to them and it doesn’t need to in order for it to manifest. In just a few days of being alone with my Bible, devotionals and journal I’ve experienced more confidence, fear and a host of other emotions.
I remember when I first began falling out of love with teaching. I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to reinvent myself. I felt guilty that I was betraying black boys and girls who needed me because I was seen as one of the good teachers. I’ve never won any awards but I’ve always poured all of me into every year, every set of students if not more. Four years after I began teaching I started having panic attacks. It was one of the hardest decisions to make a move to a new school but I did and I survived. One year later I received a promotion as a reading coach. It was a great experience until I lost sight of me and the reason God had promoted me. I allowed the noise to drive me to frustration and I lost my confidence. I began operating in self and not in Christ’s strength. This opened the door for a number of events to occur that resulted in me being returned to the classroom and folks who pretended to be my supporting cast sliding into the job I’d prayed for and believed God has provided.
The lessons learned over those years were tough. But Job said it best, “Naked came out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither, the Lord gave, and the Lord taketh away; blessed be the name of the Lord. Job 1: 21 KJV Looking back I realize that nothing went wrong during that season. It was never meant to be permanent. It was a test that I both failed and passed. I learned that I need more mentoring and polishing for a leadership role. I learned that the enemy really does come to kill and destroy (I was hospitalized and off for two weeks). I learned forgiveness is more powerful than bitterness. Eventually those who had a hand in unseating me experienced tragedy and either reached out to me for prayer or I reached out to them to support. I am not saying that I wanted something bad to happen to them but karma is a bulldog. The Bible says that if we put it in the ground, it will grow and produce a harvest. What are you planting?
Fast forward seven years and the processing I had to go through to grow and glow. But God! Won’t He do it! Who would have thought I would even start a blog. That I would go from posting teacher outfits to sharing my faith. Not me. But the trials I experienced have prepared me for this moment to dream. To use the challenges to inspire other single moms or educators. What I now know is that I needed to be stripped of pride, bitterness, of depending on teaching to provide for me, playing small, the inability to see my gift as something more than just being a classroom teacher to arrive here today. The Kerissa that’s writing this post. I’ve been given a task to impact lives for the Kingdom and I plan to do just that in the season to come. This year I’m asking God for his plan and planning. God says, “I know the plans I have for you…plans to prosper you… plans to give you hope and a future…pray to me, and I will listen to you” Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
All the years I’ve spent praying was and will always be the catalyst that has and will propel me into my destiny. The times when I prayed for my students and hoped I wouldn’t get fired, the times I’ve prayed for my leaders, strangers, Facebook friends, real friends, served on the prayer team, hosted prayer conerence calls to prayer for our kids, prayed with parents for their kids, prayed with kids concerning their parents. All those moments. All of them. He has heard my petition. I know because he confirmed it on New Year’s Day and again Saturday. Both of the messages were about vision. So this year I wrote it down. I addressed the following questions:
- What am I good at?
- What do I enjoy doing most?
- What accomplishments make me feel best?
- List five moments in my life when I was acutely aware of this feeling of fulfillment.
- What does this reveal about my purpose?
- If money wasn’t a consideration, how would I fill my days?
- How does this compare with where I am now?
- What one small step can I take right now to move toward my calling?
- What have I learned about my purpose through failure?
- Who do I admire for the way they applied their talents?
- What can I learn from them?
- How would I describe my vision for my life this year?
Other suggestions from these devotionals were to ask family and friends who really get me to give me feedback about on how I could use my talents? I had already done this on Facebook prior to reading those messages. Most people said something with fashion, mentoring and speaking. What say you? It was hard tackling those questions. Actually writing them down and answering them made the coming transition really real. I awoke Sunday morning tired and sick. I put me fully into journaling those answers. What I realized is that I’ve put what I desired into the atmosphere, released some negative energies (doubt, disbelief, fear, lack and so much more) and taken on a BIG goal. It took something out of me and sparked a new faith within me. I know this won’t happen overnight but God and I are finally on the best journey for this divamom and that’s to fulfill His will for my life by serving those who can benefit from my story.
Let me know if you decide to tackle the questions above.
Clinging to "Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Proverbs 29:18