I just finished Beth's book & I can't remember a time I've ever been more moved & terrified at the same time. I'll get to that part in a minute, but for now let me share the ending from the book in Beth's words.
"He is calling you, beloved. He is summoning you to freedom. He is wooing you to joy. He is inviting you to live on purpose and spin around with childlike faith in the acute awareness of His love for you. His hand is outstretched. Take your dignity back no matter where you've been or what has happened to you. Hold on to your security for all you're worth. Nothing and no one can take it from you."
And her closing statement, "Now get out there and show some wide-eyed little girls what a secure woman looks like!"
Her closing statement is what has me terrified. It has me trembling and all most nauseous. If you saw me now and happened to witness my mega hot flash last night at the conclusion of our VBS director's meeting, you might think I'm in need of medical assistance. Why on earth would that statement cause such a reaction? Because it might as well have been the biggest wake-up call and confirmation from God I have received in a very long time.
You see, I'm about to put something in "black and white" that I'll never be able to go back and say I didn't say. Once it's in cyberworld, it's there to stay. God just officially gave me my purpose and calling. I've tossed and turned with a calling to outreach for young girls, but didn't think I was ready or that God was really wanting to use me. When you read a book as amazing as this one and think of ALL the life-changing things she had to say and then have it end with that statement.....IT HAS TO BE GOD. AND he was using her to speak directly to me. After all, I have been praying for confirmation of purpose and to HEAR God's voice over all the garbage in my head and all the chaos around me.
I've denied that He has placed the calling on me for so long out of my own fears. Those fears are still VERY undeniably REAL and SCREAMING at me. However, I keep remembering that God doesn't call the equipped, he equips the called. By Golly, I sure hope that is true because I'm SO NOT equipped. After all, we are talking about someone who trembles at the thought of just having to introduce herself to a room of ANY size.....be it one or a hundred. WE are talking about someone who can write out her feelings ALL day long, but can't squeak out a single word vocally. Oh boy, God what are you thinking? Are you sure you know what you are doing? I KNOW you do , but are you sure you don't want to change your mind? It's OK with me. I can easily back out and say I misunderstood. But my heart knows better. My heart knows this is what is right.
I don't have a clue what "this" all means. I don't have a clue which direction it means I must go. I don't know if it means doing something in our own church, in an outside organization, or something completely different. I have ZERO clue. I don't know how He is going to use me, but I know it's time. My heart has been burdened for TOO long for young girls that are growing up in a world full of lies. I've watched my daughter feel alienated for TOO long because she knows the TRUTH but doesn't have much support in developing it deeper. BUT this is more than just because she has needs not being met. This burden came LONG before I ever knew what kind of life she would have. This has been on my heart for at least 15 years with there having been several peak times that it has been even more pressing. BUT I turned around and walked the other way. I can't do that again.
I'll also admit that this age of girls terrifies me. They are SO not my comfort zone. I'd much rather love on preschoolers. I'm great at lavishing them with love, singing little songs with them, and I'm craft crazy. THAT is the easy direction to go because I LOVE it. However, my burden is not for them. I so want to smother them with love, but my heart doesn't break for them. I don't find myself awake at night wondering what I can do to make a difference in their lives.
I thought God had called us to adopt for MANY years. That was MY DESIRE. Part of me still yearns for that, but that door was closed to us due to medical reasons. I began college with the dreams of being a missionary in Honduras and working in a newly opened orphanage that my youth leaders were involved with. Life took a different direction. However no matter what has happened in my life, I always come back to the burden of young girls...those just about to enter the world of Jr. High.....just before almost everything they know to be true gets ripped out from underneath them. That USED to be girls entering High School and now I see it so VIVIDLY in our 5th graders. Something has to change! Someone has to step up and try to reach them, one at a time. I know God is asking me to be one of those people. I just don't know how he is going to use me in doing it. I just know I'm going to be a willing vessel. I'm just going to be praying, BEGGING and PLEADING for him to equip me because my own inadequacies are screaming at me right now. I know I have to step out in faith, but it's going to be a hard step to take. But I know that He would have given up on me LONG before now if this wasn't what He wanted me to do.