"Because YOU are in control.
Yes YOU are in control."
Yes YOU are in control."
WOW! It hit me halfway through the song that this is exactly it. God IS in complete control of my life, and I have NO FEAR. NONE. The plane ride? NONE. The money? Pshhhh! God is in control of ALL the money. Culture shock? NONE. I know God wants me there, and while everything will be difficult, I know that through Him, everything is possible!
So how DID I get here? I'm glad you asked! I will tell you my(HIS) story in its entirety, leaving out nothing (except if I forget!), because even though it's a long, LONG story, it needs to be told. And because it's my blog :). So grab a cup of coffee (or a popsicle - gosh it's hot!), and stick around for a bit!
Up until May of 2008, I had my life all planned out. By the time I was 13, I knew that I would be an actress on Broadway. I had been part of a theater company since I was nine, taken ballet since I was ten, and loved, LOVED being on the stage. It seemed like a no-brainer, pursuing something I was good at and really enjoyed. So I kept at it, participating in all my company's shows, taking 4 dance classes a week (that only lasted a year, though I did continue to take multiple lessons), and planning for my glamorous life on the stage. I was acting professionally as well as with my company, and I was having a great time! But when I imagined my future, it was always only me. I was the center of my life's plans.
I did want to have a family - who doesn't want babies at one or more times? But when I thought about it, my plans included me hiring a nanny (I would be rich, remember?) and leaving for rehearsals and shows. Now, that may not sound too bad to you. In fact, you might be nodding your head saying, "It's good for you to have the freedom to do that. You go girl!". But I now know that when and if I'm married, I will be a homemaker and the primary caregiver of my children. This is the desire and heart the Lord has given me, and I look forward to it. I have freedom in Christ, what more do I need? :)
But I digress... where was I?
So I was working very hard towards my goal of being a musical theater actress on Broadway. As I entered high school, I started thinking about college, and where I should go. I realized that I didn't want to do the typical 4 year thing. I wanted the "freedom" to do what I liked. I wanted to rub shoulders with the rich and famous, and study under the best. I even sat down with my dance teacher (who had extensive musical theater experience) and talked through everything I would need to achieve my goal. Of course, I didn't think about how I was going to pay for it all. Money was not an issue (even though, hello, it really was). All I thought about was being in the spotlight. (cue jazz hands)
One night in May of '08, I went to the monthly homeschool meeting for our homeschool group. It was the night of the teen panel, where a lot of teens who have homeshooled high school or are currently in high school gather to answer questions other parents have in order to show them that a) our parents are not lunatics for doing this, and b) that you CAN homschool high school.
Since our group is very diverse in their parenting/belief/schooling ideas, you get a wide range of what people are doing.
The question about college came up, and I jumped right in to tell everyone about my big plans for stardom, again using the "I want to be free to move where I want to, when I want to".
My ideas were well-received by everyone there, and I thought "Hey! This really IS a good idea!".
Apparently God thought otherwise :)
They say the best way to make God laugh is to tell Him your plans. I imagine God was rolling on the floor while I planned my life out. Thankfully, God knew and ordained my whole future before time began, and He chose to divinely re-route it that very night.
What happened next will always be clear to me, but also very hazy... if that makes sense :)
After the meeting, as my mother and I were driving home, we began to discuss my plans for the future. As we were talking, I began thinking about helping people. Then I thought that I wanted to help people. Then I thought that that's what I should do. Like, now.
Then I turned to my mother and said the very last thing I had ever expected me to say:
"...Mom? I think I want to be a missionary."
Which surprised us both.
I continued by saying that I wanted to help people, and I maybe wanted to do something with children.
My mother, bless her heart said, "Ok. Let's see what we can do to make this happen. Are you sure?"
"Um, I think so!"
And so it began....
Part 2 to come!