I had a hunch God was about to do something different.
Many years ago, while my husband Tod was finishing Bible school, I joined Mary Kay Cosmetics. I wanted to have another baby, while also desiring to be a stay-at-home mom. Their business plan was intriguing, and right away God confirmed this was His plan for me. In just a couple of years, I had increased my business, won a car, and was being groomed to be a National Sales Director.
Then a year after our second son was born, ministry began to grow stronger and stronger in my heart. At every turn, I had confirmation that God wanted me to be in full-time ministry. Up to this point, I had believed my husband was the one called to be a pastor while I was content to be his support–nothing more.
So here I was at this crossroad. I felt a strong pull to ministry, but God had opened the doors and brought me this far in Mary Kay… So which was the right way? And secondly, if God wanted me in full-time ministry, where did I miss Him? Why did I believe with all my heart God wanted me to pursue a career in Mary Kay?
Then God revealed His secret to me: I hadn’t missed Him at all. He allowed me to believe Mary Kay was my goal, while He used it to groom me for ministry. During those two years, I learned to speak in front of women. I learned how to overcome insecurities and present myself with confidence (believing in my product). And I learned how to lead others. [Everything I am doing today in ministry.]
God took me all the way down a certain path only to stop and say, “Look right. There’s your new path.”
In a similar manner, Jesus did this with His disciples. After being raised from the dead and showing Himself, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel” (Acts 1:6)?
They had already wrestled with His death. Many of them couldn’t fathom how Jesus had performed so many miracles and declared God so passionately, only to die on a cross. They thought He was going to be king. And now that He had been resurrected, their hopes were renewed. Surely this was when He would overthrow the government and reestablish the kingdom to Israel. But not so…
Instead, He left them again, and said, “Look right. There’s your new path.”
At the time, the disciples had no idea what was about to happen on the Day of Pentecost, and its effect on evangelizing the entire world. And when God changed my path, I was just as clueless on the bigger picture of my life and ministry.
Sometimes God takes us to Point A, B, and C, just to reveal D.
We trustingly follow, with a faint glimpse of what’s ahead. But when we near what we believed was going to be the destination, only to be given instructions to make a 90-degree turn, this is when our faith is tested–because we can’t always see the bigger picture.
For example, after writing one of the Gospels, Luke also wrote the Book of Acts, and in the first verse he said, “The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach…” (Acts 1:1). We know the Book of Acts was the account of the early church and the evangelism that took place after Jesus left the disciples. And this is what Luke was trying to communicate: Jesus started it and we are going to continue it. The disciples thought it was going to play out differently. They really had no idea what the bigger picture looked like. But in the end, it was good–very good.
So this is how God leads us at times–down a certain path with a certain goal ahead, and then changing the course as He sees fit. But trust me when I say, God’s direction is always good.