Another 12-hour-day that started with my kids crying at the prospect of going into the church today and ended with Peter and me dragging our sleeping children into their beds 13 hours later. Is this what living the dream looks like?
I've been blessed in the last year with the opportunity to serve on staff at our church in the Austin suburb of Hutto. It's an awesome privilege. I've been encouraged to bring my kids with me and given the space, toys, and patience from my co-workers for them to play and watch TV. During the hours I’m in the office—usually only 12 or so a week. It seems like a pretty sweet gig to me, but my kids don't seem to see it that way, which makes me question my life choices. . . Every. Single. Day.
I have a terrible habit of second-guessing my way out of life choices. I nearly scuttled my relationship with Peter a dozen times while we were dating. I left the same (amazing) company twice because it seemed like my working there wasn't working out for the other people in my life.
Is this position God's will for me? Was it ever? If it is, then why am I struggling to feel like I'm doing my job well. Why do I feel like doing my job is damaging my kids? Can you be in the middle of God’s will and unhappy about it? Can you be in the middle of God’s will and not at peace? I was raised to believe this was not the truth. . . but then again, I was raised to believe a lot of things that aren’t exactly theologically sound.
Jesus was at peace in the storm, so I should also be, right? But if I’m not. . . doesn’t that say more about me than my boat? That’s a funny story because he was totally at peace on the boat in the middle of the storm, but you know where he wasn’t “at peace”? In the garden on the night he was arrested. And he could not have been more in God’s will.
How dare I compare their complaining about spending a few hours a week watching TV in the lobby of my office to Roman guards arresting, beating, and killing my savior. But then again, how dare I dismiss my calling and my responsibility to follow it because it hurts.
Of course my kids aren’t damaged by my job. They are affluent American kids who have never even had to go camping without access to showers and the internet. Yeah, it would be more peaceful to drive to work with my kids excited just because they get to spend the day with me. It would be fun if they saw the good that our church is doing for real people in a real community and wanted to be part of it. It would be amazing if they were proud and supportive of my role at Hutto Bible. But they’re kids. And they’re my kids.
God gave me these kids and he gave me this calling (for now) so the two of them are going to have to find a way to get along.