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  • Deanna Kohlhofer

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Several years ago, I sat in my pastor’s office and cried. I was working for the church in their preschool ministry, but I didn’t love it. Don’t get me wrong – I liked it, a lot. But it wasn’t what I was called to do. While I loved serving the preschool kiddos and their families, I always knew I wasn’t meant to stay in that role for long.

When I felt the urge to step down, my pastor asked me where I saw myself fitting in. As much as I wanted to answer his question that day, I couldn’t. I vividly remember sitting in his office and literally feeling paralyzed, as if I couldn’t move or speak. I just cried and told him I didn’t know. Over and over again, all I could say was, “I don’t know.”

But I did know.

I wanted to tell him family ministry was the role I anticipated. In fact, that is exactly what I told myself each year I stayed in preschool ministry. Working with the preschool team was just my foot in the door. Year after year, I anxiously awaited a call to the pastor’s office. Okay, not really. The thought of being summoned to the pastor’s office terrifies me. But I did anxiously await a newly created opening for me to step into the world of family ministry. That was my goal. My dream job. But that opportunity never came. And when I had the chance to tell my pastor that is what I wanted, I couldn’t. I was crushed. That moment has stayed with me for many years and it was only recently that I have been able to see the meaning in it.

At one point in my life, I was very much career-minded and hungry for opportunity. Despite myself and my ambitions, I really do believe God works things out in beautiful ways. In my season of transition, I have learned that my true calling is to write. In the last two years, I have made it a point to write as much as I could. In the process I have learned three key things that help me stay dedicated to improving my skills. Writing may not be your thing, but you can use these same three thoughts to spur you to action in your particular pursuits.

There is never enough time. We all have the same 24 hours and we all have to make choices on how to spend those hours. We can throw our hands up in the air {like we just don’t care} and use time as our excuse – or we can turn our dreams into reality. It takes a conscious effort and action.

It is almost always inconvenient. Because I have to work and be an adult, writing isn’t on the “priority” list. It brings in little money to contribute to the household, therefore, writing does not get my prime time. I have to write in the wee hours of the evening, squeeze in a few paragraphs during lunch, or jot down thoughts after a run. But I still write. Which brings me to my last point.

It requires sacrifice. Again, we have choices to make in order to pursue our dreams and crush our goals. It may require a little less sleep, a little less time hanging out with friends, and a little more diligence. People may think you are crazy – but you will prove them wrong someday. Stay focused.

When I sat in my pastor’s office, I wanted to tell him that I desired a job leading the family ministry efforts in our church. But deep down, that is not what I wanted at all. I believe God shut my mouth that day on purpose – because he knew my true purpose. My true calling is to write and I need to say no to anything that will get in the way of me putting pen to paper and creating the way God intended me to create.

My life and career have taken a lot of unexpected twists and turns over the last few years, all to land me in this spot. The very spot God anticipated me standing in when I was crying in my pastor’s office all those years ago. If he asked me today where I see myself fitting in, I would tell him the thing that gives me joy is the opportunity to write. And so I will write with joy. For now, that means just writing in my journal, working on my book, blogging, and just writing the random things that come to mind. Where it will lead, well, I just don’t know…and that is okay.

What is your dream and what are you doing to make it a reality?