When Life Fights Your Purpose by Mikal Dawn
The test was positive. My entire being numbed. I was 19-years-old, raised in a Christian home and really did love Jesus. I had turned my face from Him, however, and followed my desires. The result? I was pregnant.
In that moment, one thing screamed back at me: every dream, every ambition was now nothing.
I was nothing.
I’d grown up wanting to be many things. A ballerina, an astronaut, a lawyer.
But never a mother.
My first year of Bible College, I majored in Intercultural Studies. My mind was made up: I wanted to be an overseas missionary. But this pregnancy? That wasn’t going to happen now. Suddenly, my world, tipped.
If I couldn’t be one of my dreams and never wanted to be a mother, what was my purpose in being here?
Fast-forward many years, and I found myself a single parent, still thinking about missions, and occasionally putting fingers to keyboard and writing—but not connecting the three.
I’m embarrassed at how long it took me to see what God was doing. He was redeeming my choices—my sins. He showed me that being a mother is being a missionary, just in my home rather than Africa. He surrounded me with loving women who invested in me and my son so I could learn and grow, and teach him to learn and grow.
God then placed me in a job with a Christian author. A Christian parenting author. Now I was working with a man who showed me what a real Christian man looked like and how he parented. God was building up standards for me to measure other men by. Not only that, He was building my confidence in the gift of writing He gave me.
See how everything started to connect?
One summer, God began a new work in my heart. He sparked a desire for more children. It was ridiculous, really. My son was ten years old, and I was more than happy being his mother, but I didn’t want any more children. God pressed on anyway. That fall, I met my husband—who wanted kids—and we fell in love and married rather quickly. That’s when God’s plans started jumping out at me.
I was born and raised in Canada. I lived there my entire life up to that point. My husband? American. Military, at that.
Suddenly, God started to give me clarity. He was bringing me out of my exile—the one I’d put myself in with my choices—and revealing His purpose for my life. A purpose for peace, and a future with hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)
Over the next several years, not only did He reiterate that my missions work starts in my home with my own children, but He revealed to me that I am in international missions (even if it’s the same continent), and I’m in a unique position of understanding the military spouse and the lifestyle that accompanies that. And He’s using the gift of writing He gave me as a way to connect with women from all walks of life.
It gives me goosebumps.
Sometimes it’s impossible to see God’s plans when we’re in the midst of questioning our purpose. And sometimes it can take years—or a lifetime—before we’ll understand. But we can take Him at His word, “For I know the plans that I have you, says the Lord, plans for peace and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11, MEV).
He never fails.
Let's talk about this. Have you discovered your purpose? If so, how did God bring clarity for you, and how are you living this out? If not, what are some ways you could begin to discover your purpose? For those who have already been on that journey, share the steps God brought you through so that others can learn from your experiences.
Whether you're still prayerfully discerning your life's purpose or are actively taking steps to live that out, we encourage you to join us for one of our Wholly Loved conferences where we'll dig deep into this life-changing topic. Because we will never be truly fulfilled until we're doing that which we were created to do.
Visit our conference page to learn more about our upcoming conference page.
We've also added an additional Christmas event. Join us on December 17th for Not a Pinterest Christmas, hosted by First United Methodist in Plattsmouth.