I never imagined I’d have five children.
Like, never, in my wildest dreams did the very thought of birthing and parenting five children ever cross my mind.
I always thought I’d have three kids because I came from a family with three kids. Becoming a mom with my first-born was the hardest transition of my life, yet, I knew in the bottom of my heart that I wanted my daughter to have two siblings. I never considered expanding my family beyond the well-rounded family of five, mainly because I am a selfish person who lacks patience and has a big anger management problem. On top of that, my biggest bent towards sin has been (and most likely, always will be) my battle against perfectionism. If I were interviewing to become a mom, these flaws and weaknesses would totally hinder me from receiving the job. They certainly are not ideal traits to have as a mother of multiple children!
I was thinking about this the other day, as I am quickly approaching the last trimester of my fifth pregnancy, and an idea came to mind – What if God wanted to use my human imperfections as a way to perfect me?
What if the very sins Satan tries to use to steer me away from God are the exact things God is repurposing into my life’s purpose?
It was an interesting thought and it provoked deep reflection on not just my biggest struggles but also my deepest desires.
With every child I’ve given birth to, I’ve released a part of my self (i.e. flesh, not identity) and it has been a refreshing and renewing contributor of my sanctification. In fact, every time I’ve ever felt my sinful bents taking over I would cry out to the Lord to rid me of them and save me from them once and for all…and then about a month later I would become pregnant. (Ok, God. I guess that is one way to answer a prayer about selfishness, impatience, and anger!)
Likewise, I consider every trial and tough season of my life to be a benefit of experience for how I parent my children. Specifically, my daughters (which I will have 4 of). Is it possible that I fell victim to negative body image issues and eating disorders, an endless and unsatisfying cycle of artificial love, female relational conflicts, and more, in order to prepare for raising strong, fearless and faith-filled women of Generation Z?
On the flip side, are the interests and passions that were longed developed early on in my childhood indicators of gifts and talents God intended to use to complete His purpose for my life?
I don’t know, but to me, it sure seems to make a lot of sense. It’s like all of the puzzle pieces of life are laid out on a table and I’m still working to flip some of them over to reveal their picture. Fragments of the puzzle are starting to take shape, but the end product is far from complete. Still, each piece that is put in place uncovers more of the final creation.
We can make our own plans, but God determines our steps and the direction that we will travel (Proverbs 16:9). In this crazy world that we live in, a world that doesn’t make any sense, is it crazy to believe that every little thing works together for a greater purpose? (Romans 8:28)
Consider the “bad” stuff, though not brought on by God but rather is a result of the fallen, sinful world we live in – what if God’s goodness and faithfulness can make a completely bad situation absolutely complete? I believe our faith can be strengthened if we choose to believe that God really is as good and as faithful as He says He is. If we believe He can and will make all things good, then perhaps we can begin to piece together all of the moments that appear to be scattered about.
A single puzzle piece is nothing but a jagged piece of cardboard. It has no purpose. It is rough. It looks out of place, broken and alone, yet, when united with other pieces a picture finally starts to take shape and eventually is brought together into a seamless creation.
I challenge you today to reflect on your sinful bents and contemplate how the Master Designer can perfectly align even the most crooked imperfections. And maybe there is a chance His alignment will transform into your greater assignment.
“Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for His miraculous power constantly energizes you.” ~ Ephesians 3:20 (TPT)
“I am convinced and confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will [continue to] perfect and complete it until the day of Christ Jesus [the time of His return].” ~ Philippians 1:6 (AMP)