Monday, October 22, 2007

Finding my Identity - Fawcett

It began with my oldest daughter’s wedding. As we planned over the long winter months for that special day, I was aware of, in a very subtle way, a slight ache somewhere in the pit of my stomach. Yet I couldn’t define the reason for it being there. And when my middle daughter decided to move out into her own apartment a week before her sister’s wedding, the ache evolved, taking the form of inexplicable moodiness. I guess I really began to put it all together when, five months later, my youngest went to university. That was the point where I recognized that I had an identity problem.

For twenty four years, I have been classified as a wife and mother and during eleven of those years the label became home schooling mom. What I didn’t recognize during all of that time was that I had made my vocation into my identity. I had not realized that I wasn’t really a wife. I was a follower of Christ who had the privilege of being married to a Godly man. I wasn’t a home school mom. I was a Christian given the task of teaching, in our home, the children with which God had blessed us.

Fortunately, the empty nest/mid-life crisis was taken in hand ahead of time when God dropped a writing course into my lap well before our youngest moved out. I began to redefine my goals and schedules and in so doing moved from one career to another without too much stress. But that portion of time forced me to rethink this identity issue and I realized, to my shame, that I had allowed my tasks to define who I was. In those several months I was pushed by an unseen, gentle hand, into realizing that I had made duty my focal point—my ultimate goal for being. The problem with that was that duty can end as quickly as it begins—as it did with home teaching and parenting. Time and time again, Jesus calls us to follow him, to take up his cross—to become Christ-like. And I had been content to be a wife and mother—to make that my identity instead of placing it into Christ.

As I stepped into my writing career, I decided then and there that I would never be—a writer. I decided first and foremost that I would be a believer in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that I would be a follower of Jesus Christ, the son of God--a calling that has no end. And that my writing would simply be a ministry—a ‘next task’—that God has led me to complete in his time. Oh, perhaps I may still refer to myself in conversation as a writer, but you will know the thought that will follow. You will know that I’m not really a writer but a Christian who writes.

Donna Fawcett
Author of Thriving in the Home School
Author of Donna Dawson novels Redeemed and The Adam & Eve Project

1 comment:

Marci said...

Hi Donna - I can so relate! My two eldest got married this summer, my middler went off to university and my "baby" has one foot out the door. Thanks for the reminder of where our identity should be rooted. :)Marcia

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