What is a “clip show”, you ask? Here’s how Wikipedia describes it:
“A clip show is an episode of a television series that consists primarily of excerpts from previous episodes. Most clip shows feature the format of a frame story in which cast members recall past events from past installments of the show, depicted with a clip of the event presented as a flashback.”
Lifeway publishes a monthly magazine called “Homelife”. In the March 2011 issue, there is an invitation for readers to submit a 600-word story telling how God is working in their own home life. And they pay $75 for each submission that is printed. So I thought I might as well throw this into the “dad from day one” canon in the event that “Homelife” magazine decides not to publish it.
This clip episode doesn’t reveal anything particularly new to regular readers of my blogs “dad from day one” or “God-Nudged Leap of Faith”, but I see how it could be a good thing for newer readers who are just now jumping in. For some reason, over the past couple of weeks, I have been drawing in between 40 and 100 new “dad from day one” readers each day. So to you new readers, now you can get a better background perspective. And for my faithful readers of nearly one year of “dad from day one”, thank you for hanging around.
Here is the story I submitted to Lifeway’s “homelife” magazine today:
“God-Nudged Leap of Faith”
It would be one thing if my wife and I had lost our jobs. That would make more sense to some people. Instead, we actually chose to leave behind our enjoyable and financially stable jobs in Nashville to move to my small hometown of Fort Payne, Alabama. Yes, in this economy, we did the unthinkable. Oh, and I should mention, we moved only two weeks after our son was born.
Why? I guess it boils down to the universally familiar concept that when people have a near death experience, their life flashes before their eyes. I could look back on my life twenty years from now, feeling much more secure in my finances, but my kids would not grow up truly knowing their grandparents, aunts, and uncles the way they would if we all lived in the same city together.
So we took a God-nudged leap of faith. Since our move three months ago, we have made full time jobs out of looking for full time jobs. Granted, we both have college degrees (my wife even has a Master’s), impressive resumes, solid experience, and great personalities; but we are either under-qualified or over-qualified for the few jobs available.
In this home life of ours, time is standing still as I watch a constant slideshow in mind of my past, present, and future. I struggle daily not to play the “what if?” game. But at this point, it is not about the decisions that led me to this difficult place. It is about what God can do with this situation now and how He can be seen by others because of it. Not to mention, I know that this event will either enhance my faith through discipline and patience, or it will cause me to foolishly put faith in men who may or may not provide a job for me.
Fortunately, it is not people who provide jobs anyway. It is not them who help me provide for my family. It is completely God. That is something I have begun reminding myself daily. And in the process, I have been directed to one of God’s Hebrew names: Jehovah Jireh. It means “The Lord will provide.” I have been getting into the habit of praying to Jehovah Jireh, as His name specifically declares His providence.
I am not hopeless. Yet I will personally admit that as a man who is designed to care and provide for his family, not having a job though I am fully capable and qualified, is quickly taking away my dignity. But really, is dignity what I am after? No.
Seeking after God and only trusting in Him, instead of men or corporations or even myself, is a humiliating process. The word “humiliating” has such a negative connotation to it, yet being humbled (another form of the word “humility”) is a necessary process in order to mature. As for my pride- it is to be damned, literally. It only gets in the way of what God can do.
In the mean time, I get to spend plenty of time with my wife and our new son. Not every new dad has that ability. And since I happen to be the author of a baby blog called “dad from day one,” I catch every minute of my son’s amazing and hilarious new baby tricks, so I never run out of writing material. You know, I can see already I am going to miss this stage of my life.
Thank God for the good times and for the bad. Sometimes it is not until you look back on them both to know which was which.