I’ve never been wowed by fortunetellers. Not even religious ones.
Still, there’s something about a person pointing their finger in your face and declaring they see a bright future ahead. Makes you listen up.
She had a powerful story. She told it with the relish of a black preacher, leaving spaces for uh-huhs and well! — her voice was strong and clear. She had been a frat party whore. She told how she’d leave parties early in the morning, her clothes disheveled, her hair wild, and her heart a mangled mess.
Then she met Jesus.
Looking at her, immaculate, her ebony skin bright and her face radiant, it was hard to picture her the way she described her unsaved self. She was a gift, a reminder that the power of the gospel is still the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth no matter where they are.
When she turned her eyes on me later that afternoon, she paused. With her fearless manner, she stared at me and pointed that prophetic finger.
“I see God using you in a powerful way one day.”
I sucked my breath in, teetering between my natural skepticism and my hunger for her words to be true.
“Well…I hope so. I’d love for Him to use me as a wife and mother someday.”
She shook her head hard. “No, he’s gonna use you for more than that. That, but more than that. Much more.”
I smiled, trying not to be overly flattered, thinking, What could be better than to be a wife and mother?
I don’t know if I ever saw her again, but her words stuck somewhere deep. I know that God has a great plan for all His people including me, but seeing her emphatic confidence that God would bless me indeed seeded inside me a secret hope.
I was born in 1981. Raised by, I think, the world’s most loving parents, I had a wonderful childhood. Although I became a believer in Jesus Christ as a four-year-old, I decided as I grew to not be “too religious.” Just so I got to heaven, I was good with being cool in this world first.
Sadly, my youthful dreams of coolness never materialized.
It wasn’t till I was a very depressed freshman in high school that I began listening in church, and one night I heard the truth that following Jesus won’t make you miserable; in fact, it’s the only way to see your dreams come true.
I gave in. Jesus, I prayed, Help me want to do your will. I can’t promise I’m going to do it, but I’m asking you to help me do it and help me not stop wanting to do your will.
He answered. Little by little, He chipped away at the depression and the dirt that was dragging me down. Actually, He’s still chipping away. Twenty years later. 🙂
I graduated high school and then college. With my prophetess’s words ringing in my ear, I married the love of my life. We found out we were expecting. Then that the baby had died.
I grieved as I watched the tots at church hopping off the stage after church. Will I never have children? Just the sight of a newborn would send me into inconsolable tears. I remember hiding out in a lady’s bathroom at a baby shower, sobbing.
My husband told me it was time to stop crying. At first I was offended, but then I remembered that God speaks to kids through parents and to wives through husbands. I dried it up. Nine months later, I was nestling the most beautiful baby boy into his crib.
Fast forward twelve years later. At this moment, my five-month-old has just fallen to sleep (thank You, Jesus:). Every other year after our firstborn was born, God gave us another gorgeous baby. Except for 2013, when He gave us two at once. That’s eight kids, in case you’re wondering. Plus two in heaven.
God has blessed me beyond anything I could have imagined as I told that girl my deepest desire — to be a wife and mother.
And yet her words still haven’t faded. “That, but more than that.”
I still wonder, What could be greater than being a wife and mother? I’m still not sure there is anything greater. That’s just me, though. Sorry if you disagree.
There is, however, one little niggling dream that I’ve had since childhood. Try as I might, I can’t get rid of it.
I want to write. I think I need to write.
I have a hard time understanding people who say they don’t like to write. I guess that’s how my brother feels when I say I don’t care about baseball. Or how my son feels when my brother tells him he doesn’t care about reading.
It really does take all kinds.
I’m under no illusions that God has some plan for me that’s better than His plan for anyone else. I know for a fact that every one of His plans are sure to bring untold joy to any of us.
Still, I choose to believe that He does have a plan for me, and that it might be for me to write.
He promised, “Delight thyself also in the LORD, and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” I’ve found this promise to be thrillingly true. That’s why, with a giddy delight that I get to do this, I write to you.
Buckle up, I’m ’bout to get preachy. I just have to say it, though. What desire has God planted deep in your heart? You can’t know if it’s a desire that will bless or curse you unless you’re looking into His loving heart regularly. Until you open your heart to His love for you, you can only get more miserable wondering where you really fit.
I do know, as surely as my prophet-girl knew about me, that God has a great plan for you. Don’t shrug it off. Don’t be so modest. He has one FOR YOU.
Wait for it!
He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
God is so powerful, He not only sacrificed Himself to give you everlasting life, He also rose again to prove He had really gotten the job done. All you have to do is take a deep breath, thank Him, and walk in the joy of knowing He has done it all.
If you are a young lady who dares to dream that she might have a fairy tale story awaiting her, then stop.
God’s plan for you is so much more awesome than any dull fairy tale.
I’m sure of it.