My favorite stories are “The Chronicles of Narnia”, “The Hobbit”, and “The Lord of the Rings”. I’m a total sucker for an unlikely hero and an epic journey. The curiosity of the unknown and the lure of distant lands keep me turning pages long after I should have gone to bed.
Presently, I feel like I’m smack in the middle of my own epic journey. It has taken many twists and turns over the years and now, I’m on the precipice of taking my first big step.
“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings
I really do feel like a Baggins minus the furry feet and the super cute round hobbit door (which I totally want).
Walking stick in hand.
Ready to step out into the great unknown.
“Then something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit
Up until now, I have been working in the field of education. I got right into it when I graduated college. In one capacity or another, I have always been a teacher. Unfortunately, the field that I once loved has morphed into a complete mess and I don’t recognize it anymore. Over time, it has become clear to me that I no longer belong.
Completely lost and confused, I started seeking God for His direction. One night, I was sitting on bed literally making lists on a yellow legal pad of the things I do and don’t like to do, my skills and weaknesses, pros and cons of my options, as my very patient husband helped me sort through all of it.
My lists looked something like this:
- The Bible
- Imparting knowledge aka “brain dumping”
- Painting furniture
- Making improvements
- Talking to people and socializing
- Helping people do something they think they can’t do (but I totally know they can
- Having answers
- Being creative
- Rubbing elbows with people and bouncing ideas around
- Being in a box
- Not having the ability or authority to bring my ideas to life
- Being a punching bag
- Taking the hit for poor service, shoddy workmanship, or sub-par products that I had no control over
- Taking the blame for things that I didn’t do
- Being under-appreciated
- Being overlooked
- Feeling unworthy or unneeded
- Dedicating my time to something that is not worthwhile or doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things
- Wasting time
My heart was deeply longing for a chance to do what made it come alive. If there was anyway for it to come to fruition, God would have to orchestrate it. It was all too big for me.
“I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you.”
Taking a leap of faith, I started asking the people I knew in the furniture painting industry if they needed any help. I still remember the trepidation and uncertainty in my gut.
“A sudden understanding, a pity mixed with horror, welled up in Bilbo’s heart: a glimpse of endless unmarked days without light or hope of betterment, hard stone, cold fish, sneaking and whispering. All these thoughts passed in a flash of a second. He trembled. And then quite suddenly in another flash, as if lifted by a new strength and resolve, he leaped.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit
And then, one day, it happened.
Someone said yes.
Last night, I was given a key to my next great adventure working at Love Street Vintage Furniture.
“I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now…Come further up, come further in!”
― C.S. Lewis, The Last Battle
God has finally turned the page for me to enter into the next chapter.
“And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.”
– C.S. Lewis, The Last Battle