This year, I completed Beth Moore’s bible study, Breaking Free: Making Liberty in Christ a Reality in Life. One of the things that I enjoyed most about the topic was that it got me thinking about my calling. I am all about movement; and as soon as I read on page four that Beth’s gift is guiding believers to love and live God’s Word, I started pondering my life purpose until it became clear that what I am passionate about is progress.
My calling is encouraging people to learn from what they live through and do something to improve their lives. It is with this Say-No-To-The-Status-Quo philosophy in mind that I began searching for a way to take my ministry to the next level in 2011. Because God’s will often builds upon what we’re already doing, I thought that my next challenge would involve finding a wider audience for my writing and speaking topics; and when a friend invited me to travel with her to a women’s conference in North Carolina, I happily agreed.
I’d been wanting to attend this annual event for several years because it included appointments with publishers and the opportunity to be mentored by a member of a national speaker team. Arriving over-prepared for both, I was surprised when none of my work seemed to matter. A hoarse voice made it hard to effectively deliver my presentations, and the editors that I met with refused to look at anything I had prepared. It was like God had closed doors so fast that I had no chance to walk through them; and I left the conference feeling even more confused than before I signed up to attend.
Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend once said: “Sometimes on the road of life…getting lost is how we find out way.”ˆ1
I was on this road (and on my way to the airport) when clarity came in the form of another conference attendee who had been assigned to our limo at the last minute.
“What do you do for a living?” I asked her.
“I’m a life coach,” she replied.
Although my first reaction was skepticism after she told me about her minimal amount of training, my second one was curiosity as I wondered: Is God leading me to this profession?
My answer came a few days later when Bill agreed that becoming a life coach would give me the training I needed to realize my dream of creating a goal-setting and accountability group ministry for churches.
In September I started a 6-month training program to become a Board Certified Life Coach, proving that life doesn’t just happen when you’re making plans … Sometimes it happens because of them.
I had to step out in faith to pursue what I thought was a good path, before God would lead me to a better one. Never was this more clear than when I opened the textbook for my core coaching class and read that “coaching is about insight, learning, and choosing to act.”ˆ2
As soon as I saw this definition, I looked back at my notes from the Beth Moore bible study that I completed earlier in the year and confirmed that it was almost identical to my calling: I want people to learn from what they live through and do something to improve their lives and God made sure that the first person to get an education … was me.
What I learned is that God’s will does build upon what we are already doing. And when one door (or two) closes, it’s because He has an even better one for me—and all of us—to walk through.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11
ˆ1 Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend, What to Do When You Don’t Know What to Do ( Brentwood: Integrity Publishers, 2003), Back Cover.
ˆ2 Patrick Williams and Diane S. Menendez, Becoming a Professional Life Coach, p. 105