2018 has been a wild ride, and I am overwhelmed by the fact that what I am writing is, in effect, an epilogue for what feels like the fastest year of my life! As I think back over the past ten months or so, I see God’s undeniable hand in so many instances that it is hard to pick just one to talk about. But before I start, here’s a little bit of context: My husband and I moved to Charlotte three years ago, and it has taken about that long for us to begin feeling like we are finding our stride in this city. Both of us have held at least six different jobs combined, since arriving in the Queen City, while trying to work towards stability. In the spring of 2016, I was offered a job at a local non-profit whose vision and mission I very much believed in. As you can imagine, I was beyond thrilled to start—work I found to be incredibly meaningful AND an actual grown-up, adult job! It seemed too good to be true.
And then I found out I was pregnant.
I started my job, filled with confusion about God’s timing. He seemed to have completely orchestrated my being hired—so why did He make this job happen just so I could resign in nine months?
I ugly-cried about it more than once. I loved everything about the job, and my superiors were more than gracious to me as my due date grew closer. I eventually trained my replacement, handed in my keys, and prepared myself for my new career-shift.
Fast forward to 2018.
My husband and I have just finished two years of ministry work. Our daughter is newly one year old. I have found myself with a lot of extra head space and don’t know what to do with it. I prayed a lot that God would show me what to do with the desires I had in my heart that I often times couldn’t name—desires for purpose and hope that the parts of me I knew to exist before becoming a mom didn’t just die off when I had a child.
I talked with my husband about my restlessness and suggested to him that I could ask my former employer if they would consider hiring me again. We had a lot of contingencies, one being a lack of childcare options for our daughter. I also had a lot of guilt.
Shouldn’t I love being a stay-at-home mom and a house wife and find those things fulfilling on their own?
Will Lucy feel like I’m abandoning her during the hours I’m working?
Am I being selfish?
And so we discussed, we prayed, and I planned a trip to visit my friends at the office. I decided that I wouldn’t bring up my question about returning to work unless the conversation with my former manager naturally went that way.
My daughter and I enjoyed catching up with old co-workers at the office. As we were getting ready to say goodbye to my former manager, she seemingly out of the blue stood up from her desk, shut her door, and quietly said, “Would you consider coming back to work here?”
I was so taken aback that I could barely manage to stammer a “Yes!”
She smiled and said that she’d talk with her superiors and would get back with me with details.
In the end, I was invited back to my old job—the one I was hired for in 2016. And those contingencies I mentioned before? They ended up not being obstacles at all. My superiors welcomed my daughter to join me on the days I work at the office and she thoroughly enjoys playing there with the children of the families who come in for services.
There are so many reasons why I KNOW this was God’s doing, though I cannot begin to understand WHY He would choose to do it.
He was the one to bring it up in my manager’s mind to ask me back.
He was the one to put the restlessness in my heart.
He was the one to allow my daughter to come with me to work (which is basically unheard of to begin with).
It’s amazing to look back and see Him at work; again, I don’t understand the WHY or how He moves, but I can’t deny it when He does. I really believe that those first few months of me working before I had my daughter has allowed me to be successful going back to work WITH my daughter. It’s also shown me that when God wants something to happen, it will happen.
This whole experience has shown me that He really cares about the details of my life AND my daughter’s life—most days I think she enjoys going to the office more than I do! And as I keep moving forward, I try to remember that, in every little moment, He’s at work weaving together all the little seemingly scattered pieces into something that will ultimately bring Him glory, even if we never fully understand it.
Danika is a full-time wife and mom, part-time Administrative Coordinator at Project 658, and all-time drinker of anything caffeinated. She loves being outside, seeing people holistically empowered, and doing her part to see and then show others the beauty hiding in the ordinary.