I’ve been reflecting a lot on the various changes that will be happening in my life so soon…for obvious reasons, of course, with the imminent arrival of the twins, as well as the move that we will be making in April to Bloomington. The biggest piece is the shift in my vocation – from full-time pastor to full-time parent (not that Andy won’t be a full-time parent, but you know what I mean, it’s slightly different since I’ll be stay-at-home). I have moments where I really do struggle to understand God’s timing and calling for me, and moments where I feel excited about this season of parenthood – it is a different kind of learning season after all – and how God will use it to shape my faith in deeper ways.
But, as with any change there’s always a period of grieving…to move on and let go of some dreams and expectations. I had hoped for the past few years to begin a doctoral program in religion – and was accepted to two programs last year. The timing didn’t feel exactly right what with having to make time to learn two languages, take intense seminars, write papers, etc. so I deferred it to make sure it was right for me, and for me and Andy. I also love ministry and felt a shift within this last year where I felt myself really living into being in ministry…finally, thriving and flourishing in my identity as a pastor. And I am continuing to wait for the publication of my book on Asian American Feminist Theology by Chalice Press…I wonder if it will be on hold forever (one mentor mentioned the possibility that since the market is so saturated right now, and people are less inclined to buy books, publishing companies continue to delay certain projects and push out the ones that will be easily marketable and most successful). There’s a lot that I feel like is working out differently…but, it seems that it happens this way often.
What dawned on me recently is the reality that while I have discovered that I am quite capable of many wonderful, exciting things, it isn’t always necessarily what’s right and may not be “enough” for my life…For me to be truly faithful, it is ultimately about God’s calling. I have often felt at times that perhaps I push too hard for what I envision is God’s calling for myself…and sometimes there is an ego and selfishness that lies at the root of much of it even as I intend to be faithful to God and God’s gifts to me. But, I realize now that what’s more important is whether I am being true and genuine to who God is – in me – at this moment. So, can I put aside my desires – whether they are “from” God or not – to trust God’s calling to me in the here and now, and that what I will experience in trust and obedience will be far more fulfilling than anything I pursue on my own?