This Tuesday night began 24 hours of intense, INTENSE discernment in my life.
A priest friend text to ask me if I would consider a job teaching at a Catholic School.
I said no.
I am a Stay at Home Mom DARN IT, who probably is already doing a bit too much ministry as it is.
Then he text back, reminded me a perk would be my kids will go to school for free.
And the salary was more than generous. Like, the type of salary you don't see in Catholic schools.
He told me to pray about it.
Then, the next morning, the job was informally offered to me. To begin in two weeks. A job that would be PERFECT for me in 3-4 years when all of my children are in school. A job I have actually dreamed about being offered...in three years, when all of my kids are in school. Due to various issues, I had 24 hours to give my decision.
I panicked. But calmed down and started walking down the path of diccernment.
By Noon, I was taking the job, but everytime I thought about it I cried.
I talked to a lot of people. Friends who know me well, friends in education, both sets of parents, my cousin, my sisters...Some felt I should take it, some had reservations.
By four. I was pretty sure, despite the fact that this would be the perfect job for me in several years, we aren't several years down the line.
A dear friend who has known me since I was 16 years old said,
"Mary, you have to take the money and the tuition out of your decision making. The question is.. is God calling you to be a teacher today? And if He is, you have to say 'yes'. but if He's not... it's a really intense job, it's not the type of job you do for a paycheck, even for a short amount of time"
Other friends reminded me what it would be like on our family to have to leave so early in the morning(the school isn't super close) and get home later. How tired the kids would be. The irreplaceable time I now have with Malia/John Paul. The fact that we LOVE our current school, and I'd have to pull my kids in the next two weeks to attend a new school.
And then, I felt God steadily, but quietly say...
And so, Wednesday morning, I called back one of the best principals I am privileged to know and told her, I understood a job won't come like this again...but God told me 'Not Yet'.
And she was awesome. Totally understood. Said she would keep me in mind in the future. She said she supports people, and she supports me. This is the type of principal you want running your school.
It's two days later and I still feel really spent from the emotions of the last 24 hours.
If you read my blog, you know I always feel a tension between my call/desire to be with my children... and a pull to do the ministry God has called me to. After I told the story, my ministry partner said, "Several things like this have come your way recently, so perhaps you do need to start to be open to the Lord calling you to full time ministry, and not be afraid of that." My husband said the exact same thing.
We shall see my friends.
But my very favorite comment was from my friend Father Mario... half way through the day, when I was really undecided, shooting me a text, "Well, one thing we know for sure, you are going to write about it on your blog"
After saying no, there was an incredible peace. I mean full on absolute feeling that the right choice had been made. And then, as these things go, my two youngests turned on the absolutely adorable. Their smiles seemed bigger. Their giggles, louder. Malia took her first steps!
I'm mellow dramatic (SHOCKING, I KNOW) but those smiles confirmed I made the right decision. I am not ready to let go of our morning time yet. Going at a somewhat easy pace (we are still out the door most mornings by 8:30 am)... not rushing, and most of all, not giving up the amount of time I can see those smiles.
We are at a point now, after a lot of hard work to get out of debt, where I don't have to work full time. If we want to do Catholic schools, I might have to look into more serious full time work as the years pass, but for right now...we are good. And I'm not ready to leave them.
I talked to my sister after deciding to say no to this job.
"Do you realize how much money, between Aaron's job change and this job, we have walked away from in the last month?... Katie! I could live in a mansion"
"Yes, but you would never be there to enjoy it"
We then went on to talk even more about the decisions we make that shape our lives and the identity of our family. In a lot of ways, we are still a young family. We are figuring out who we want to be, we are putting our actions behind the values we claim to stand on. We make mistakes all the time, but I am so grateful for the times God saves us from ourselves to ensure we stay on the track we want to.
In other news.
"This is Us"
Let's just take a second to feel thankful for that show.
Speaking of Ministry.
I think I'm moving (after fulfilling current dates) to stay away from day-time retreat facilitation with very few exceptions. It is just too darn complicated to get the kids babysat, but then also, get them picked up from school at two different times. It's a bummer though, because daytime ministry is often school retreats and man, do I love me some school retreats. I had a great one last week and a couple really cool things coming up, but alas, #familyfirst
Cool birthday parties.
We have been to two really cool birthday parties in the last couple weeks. One, was at an awesome petting farm, for our best buddy Noah. Check out how cool this place is!
Eating Delicious food, playing with animals, enjoying the outside...what's not to love. And guys. Malia. I know!!!
We also were able to go to Joey's pretend girlfriend's party (he is so in love with her- in a 4 year old kind of way).. which was at a gymnastics place...
SO MUCH FUN
I know there are some of you that are like, 'Yeah, I don't care about football'. I get it, to some it just doesn't matter. But if you happen to be flipping through the stations Saturday, and land on the Michigan/Wisconsin game... just know it's HUGE!
And I'm excited.
And saved all beer consumption for the week for Saturday :)
HAVE A GREAT WEEK.
The reading doesn't have to stop here, head on over to http://thisaintthelyceum.org/ to read more quick takes!