This past Friday was my final day at work. Standing in my classroom for the last time wasn’t what I expected it to be. I anticipated difficult goodbyes with my students and coworkers, but saying goodbye to the job itself proved harder than I had imagined. Thankfully, over the weekend I found time to process this transition from employment to house dad. Here is what I learned.
It’s a funny how milestone days take forever to arrive then pass by without giving you a moment to even experience it. Friday night, rather than reveling in nostalgia I tossed and turned in my bed between regret and doubt. Had I given my kids my all? Did I invest in my coworkers like God called me to do? Is it really fine that I am without a job? Am I being selfish? Did I make the right decision to leave? These were only a few a of the questions that kept me up.
I wish I had been paying attention that night. Rather than losing sleep as I battled fear and doubt, I should have slept sound by remembering the confirmation God had given Andrea and I throughout the prior weeks. Deciding for me to be a stay-at-home dad is a decision Andrea and I did not make lightly. We prayed about it in earnest. We asked people whose opinions and beliefs we respected and worked out our obstacles, weaknesses and differences with thoughtful planning and more prayer. Throughout our decision making, God kept affirming Andrea and I that we were doing His will for our family. I say all of this not to pat ourselves on the back, but to compare his weeks of confirmation with Satan’s one night of attacks.
Friday was go time; the day we stepped out in faith. It should not have been a surprise to me that would also be the day I would doubt God’s plan for us. Satan took advantage of my vulnerability. How do I know it was Satan? Because he attacks us with fear, doubt, and his trademark specialty, guilt. These are a stark contrast to the fruit of the Spirit; love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. The questions that kept me up that night could have easily been from God, but it was the spirit behind the questions that gave Satan away. Had God wanted to tell me that I needed to stay at my job, He would have done so through conviction and/or some discerning way. After weeks of seeking Biblical advice from pastors, friends, and family, while praying for His direction and will, God would not lead us a different direction once we passed the point of no return by making us feel guilty and fearful.
Whether you are about to quit your job to stay at home with your child, or you have another major decision or turning point coming up in your life, I encourage you to seek God’s will. I am grateful for my wife who keeps me to a high standard, and for my friends who hold me accountable. Without their support I would have missed out on the confirmation that God has given me on this major life decision. I could have easily given into the lies and snares Satan had set up before me. Spend time with our Father and learn to recognize his voice. Then when the world speaks to us, we won’t be led astray.