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  • Writer's pictureMelissa Jackson

Canceled schedule

I’m sure most of us can think of times when we took a breath and thought “how did I end up here?” There are many reflections of my life, where if I stand back and take and account, I realize it was never my intention to be in the place I am – but by God’s grace and ordination – it is where I am. Sure, many people could claim hard work, dedication, focus, goals, and determination can make anything happen, but more often than not, a series of events that did not include those things has turned out to be my greatest joys.

When we decided to become a foster family we chose a private agency thinking it was the best fit for our family. During the licensing process LD went from corporate work to ministry and our finances changed drastically. I took on a part time job to offset a portion of the financial difference. During my first training I met a friend who just happened to be the foster care supervisor for our county. She encouraged me to change our license to be working with our counties Department of Social Services. Just a week after our license was transferred we received a phone call that our family was needed for a baby girl – and that baby girl became our daughter.

“A person's heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps and makes them secure.” Proverbs 16:9

I am thankful that my role in life is not to orchestrate or plan things outside of my control. My job is not to hold tightly to anything or formulate a picture perfect life that is admirable to others. God just asks me to show up, to take the next step He has laid before me, and to be ready when He gives me a nudge.

I never thought I would live in the Pacific Northwest. I never thought I would be an adoptive mother. I never thought I would research ADHD to support my child’s emotional health. I never thought I would have “daughters” in Kuwait and Germany who hold my heart. None of those were my plans, but by being available and willing to step into uncertain waters, God allowed me to experience both growth and grace.

There are so many days when the tight grip of my hand on my schedule and plans overrule availability to what God has. There are many days when the nudge in my heart is overruled by the calendar appointments. In the Bible, Paul says I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out (Romans 7:18). I desire to be available to what God lays before me, even if it means releasing control or allowing it to look haphazard. And I have no doubt God will honor my desire, even if there are days I fail miserably.

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