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The Year God Called Me Out

Called Back Home

I imagine the best place to start when you’re telling a story is in the beginning.

For me, it wasn’t just the year we began homeschooling, it’s the year God called me out upon the water. It’s the year He asked me to trust Him when nothing about what He was asking me to do made sense. It’s the year He asked for crazy faith. My relationship with the Lord deepened immensely, and I experienced an intimacy with Him that I couldn’t have fathomed before. He became as real… He felt as close… tangible … as if He were sitting right beside me. Daily.
That was 8 years ago. I look back at that year often and reflect on the profound significance my obedience during that time held for what the Lord wanted to do in our lives. Like a bookmarked, highlighted, foundational chapter of my life, forever etched on my heart is the year I was called back home.

I was studying for my Series 7 brokerage license, and Mason was a door to door sales rep for a communications company. Like pretty much every couple that marries young, we had lived paycheck to paycheck for the first several years of our marriage, but we were finally having a break through. Together, we were right at having our first six figure year, we had just bought the house we’d been renting (and remodeling) from his family, and we were smack dab in the middle of a construction loan built into our original purchase loan in order to add on to the house. The ridiculous amount of stress, tears, and legal assistance it took to get us to that point is a whole story of it’s own. Just trust me when I say it was hard fought! But, it was finally all coming together, and we were kind of having that American “we have arrived” elation.

Then, God started waking me up at 2:30am every morning with a deep, unshakeable conviction to homeschool our children. This went on for MONTHS. 2:30am on the dot. Morning after morning after morning. Each time, as soon as my eyes would open there was this heaviness, this burden, that we were supposed to homeschool. I could not escape it.

“How do I just quit my job? We’re in the MIDDLE of a construction loan that took both of our incomes to qualify for. This has been YEARS in the making.” “What is Mason going to think? We’ve already decided against homeschooling.” “What will his parents think? Are they going to think I’m ruining their grandchildren? Are they right? Are they going to think that I’m quitting my job, because I ‘just don’t want to work’?” “We’ve worked so hard to get ahead, are we going to struggle on one income?”

when god calls you out

Listen, when God is trying to radically show up in your life, when you’re hungry for growth and begging Him for more, He does not do that within the boundaries of your comfortable convenience.

It was the clearest I had ever heard Him call me to anything, yet, there it was – doubt.

Oh, I had alllllll the fears, and that was me even coming from a homeschooled background. But, you know… that was the year I learned to hear the Lord, and I understood what it meant to have “God’s peace” over a situation. I had always wondered. When people talked about how they felt the Lord was leading them to “_______”, or that they knew God was telling them to “______”, I always wondered what they felt. How they KNEW.

Every part of my flesh fought it. My mind handed me every lie and fear. Yet, the pressing burden remained.

I would be sitting at my desk and have to run to the bathroom, fighting nausea and anxiety that I was about to mess everything up. That I was hearing wrong. I would walk into that bathroom, close the stall door, and just stand there with my eyes closed praying, “Lord, please just quiet my heart. Quiet my heart. Quiet my heart. Lord, please. If this is what I’m supposed to do, please quiet my heart.”

And He did every time. Immediately. I cannot even explain the instant peace that would wash over me. The flesh fighting, but the Spirit calming.

I did that more times than I can count. It’s not a one and done thing. Faith stepping, I mean. It’s a constant surrendering, an ongoing cry out for the Holy Spirit to fill us up and empty our flesh out. My fears will resurface. Your fears will resurface. But the Lord will NEVER call us out in His name, watch us obey in faith, only to watch us be swallowed up by defeat.

The Lord does not reward faithfulness with abandonment. And so, we stepped.

I put in a 6 weeks notice (hoping to leave in extra good graces), and I agreed to go ahead and take the Series 7 exam. I bombed. Like majorly bombed. *Ahem* Perfectionist here. I don’t think I’ve ever bombed anything, and I didn’t even care. I prayed SO HARD that family members would receive the news well, one of the things I was stressing the most about, and they did. None of our decisions impacted our construction loan. But the most incredible part?

Mason received two raises within two months of my quitting, becoming the regional supervisor for the company he worked for. Incredibly enough, those two raises covered my annual income. That’s just God. It’s like that little bit of extra He threw in, because only He could have done that. That’s just Him making Himself known.

Do you remember the fishermen in Luke 5? They had toiled all night, casting net after net. There was no reward for their labor. Then the Master shows up. He beckons Simon to “thrust out a little”, launch out into the deep, and let down their nets. Simon, as we are often inclined, reminds God that they’ve already tried. He reminds Him of their toiling. But Simon says, “Nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.”

It’s amazing really, what such a little thrust of faith can do.

“And when they had this done, they enclosed a great multitude of fishes, and their net brake. And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees…for he was astonished, and all that were with him at the draught of the fishes which they had taken. (11) And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed him.”
Luke 5:6-11 KJV

God just asks us to thrust out a little.

It may not make sense. That thing that God is asking you to do. Your wisest earthly friend you’re seeking counsel from won’t always be to confirm that what you feel God calling you to is a good idea, and that’s because He isn’t calling them to it. He’s calling you. But when we thrust out a little…. we get to watch God. And when God becomes REAL in that way in our lives, and we see Him work in ways we know couldn’t have logically happened any other way, we’ll hit our knees. We’ll forsake all and follow Him.

And He’ll do it again and again and again.

That’s the beginning of it, really. The year He stretched my faith, changed the trajectory of our family, and became so very real and known. It’s the year He called me back home.


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