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© 2017 JULIE FITZ-GERALD

Uxbridge, ON | E-mail: jfitz-gerald@sympatico.ca 

  • Julie Fitz-Gerald

TRUSTING IN GOD’S PLAN

The crisp autumn air and crunchy, colourful leaves blanketing the ground serve as nature's reminder that the dog days of summer are long gone and the shorter, cozier days of fall are in full swing. While my heart aches for summer to hang on just a little bit longer, I dutifully forge ahead, consoling myself in the kitchen with family recipes that make me smile: my Great Nanny Jordan's homemade apple pie, my mom's comforting potato and leek soup, and the usual chili, stews and quiches that seem to embody fall and the impending holiday season.


This autumn has also opened a new chapter for our family: my youngest son has flown the coop for full-time junior kindergarten! Needless to say, my days that were once filled with play dates and naptimes are now undergoing a major overhaul. For six years my daily purpose has been crystal clear: nurturing and guiding my boys, preparing them for school and starting my freelancing career. Well, school's here and those six years have been a whirlwind. Slow down time, slow down! Suddenly the days are stretching out before me, filled with daunting yet exciting possibilities.


My purpose is undoubtedly shifting, but to what I have no idea. The overwhelming internal pressure to figure it out instantly can be a heavy weight to bear. Where does God want me to be? Should I continue my writing pursuits in the reliable market of trade publications or perhaps shift to faith-based writing exclusively? Maybe I should delve back into the world of fiction where my love for writing first began; but where do I start? Lord, please direct me!


My prayers for guidance are plentiful these days and I'm straining to hear what the answers are. For the first time in my life, I'm unsure about what direction I should take. For as long as I can remember, I have had a clear vision of where my life was heading (albeit with many unexpected twists and turns along the way). My high-school sweetheart became my husband, I turned my ability to write into a journalism degree, was blessed with two amazing children, and have a comfy home in the town I love; check, check, check, check. So now what?


With continued prayers and promising to never turn down an opportunity, I know without a doubt that another rewarding pursuit will reveal itself. The problem is that I'm a little impatient and am not great with the unknown. I want to reach people in a meaningful way through the gift that God has blessed me with: writing. How that comes about, I have no idea. I do know that aiming high is important and achievable. My sister, Jessie, has shown me that. With God on your side, there are no limits.


Growing up, Jessie and I were opposites. While I spent my days with friends, talking about boys and shopping for clothes, my little sister spent her days on our family farm, riding horses, mucking out stalls and playing with our golden lab, Grover. She set her mind to horseback riding, began competing in the sport of Eventing at age 11, and from there worked long and hard to become the top-placed Canadian Eventer at the 2012 London Olympics, not to mention winning the gold medal at the 2011 Pan American Games in Mexico. From humble beginnings on a hobby farm in Uxbridge, she now competes against the world's best, including the Queen's granddaughter! Her attitude: humble, yet certain. It's a certainty that comes from knowing that God is with you, encouraging you on the path that He has laid out before you.


Figuring out this path and following it is the challenge. As I search for what He has in store for me in this next chapter of my life, I am certain of at least one thing: it will be just as He intended.


"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him for He will make your path straight." Proverbs 3:5-6


"The steps of the righteous are ordered by the Lord." Psalm 37:23