Something amazing has happened over the course of my transition out of the principal’s office. It’s been difficult to put into words, and I am not certain I am going to get it just right in this format either – but I am going to give it my very best attempt! As I was seeking counsel from friends and praying about my next steps, God was dealing with many facets of my heart. For a very long time, I have sensed a pull—I’ve even called it a calling into public service. My sense of this grew even stronger as I processed some of the experiences Jaime and I walked through – the delay in disability benefits, the paltry amount that was offered, how quickly her medical bills tanked our finances, and the fact that even in the midst of dealing with the grief of losing my wife, I was left with the one of option of declaring bankruptcy. My face would become flushed when I spoke about these injustices and I knew facts and figures that I plastered on Facebook and shared with anyone who would listen. And as much as God appreciated my need to be a spokesman for the need to reform of our healthcare industry, He continued to put me in positions of walking alongside people who were in the midst of loss, or who, like myself, had experienced a crippling defeat. I was able to co-lead a grief support group, speak at a few breakfasts, and share my story over and over. Yet, each time I shared, I heard myself becoming less militant about the tie in to political issues and more focused on the truths of Who it was that walked us through our darkest hour.
As I shared, it is difficult to explain what has happened within my heart. Well, maybe it’s not so difficult. There is an old hymn that declares, “This is my story. This is my song. Praising my Savior all the day long.” I began to ask myself whether my story—if my daily song—was more focused on God’s goodness or was it centered on clever lines that fed into what I believed was my life’s calling – politics. I cannot tell you whether or not my story will end with a run or potential service to our country. What I can tell you is that it no longer causes me to get fired up and has no impact on that amazing burning sensation in your heart when you just know you’ve heard from your Father in heaven.
You know what does make me smile from the inside out? To listen to brothers and sisters – who share my faith and some who do not – who have lived more years than I have, and serve in positions far different than my middle school classroom. I enjoy listening to their journey, talking through their doubts, praying with them, and encouraging them that no matter what they have faced, that as long as there is breath and a heartbeat, God can do anything and He has something absolutely unbelievable for you and I to accomplish. For this season, I have an opportunity to share that truth with an amazing group of teenagers. I love them and let them know this as much as possible. As to how God will continue to flesh out this amazing, somewhat new desire of my heart, you and I both will just have to wait and see. Without question, I wouldn’t trade this desire for anything. God continues to work on, in, and through my heart. Through whatever it is He assigns us to do for this season of our life, “this is our story…this is our song…praising our Savior all the day long!”
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for peace and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.