By Julie Bruber
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2)
If you had said to me five years ago that I was going to leave the company I owned to raise money for a small school in one of the poorest zip codes in the U.S. with the highest incarceration rate, make a meager living and live much less comfortably, I would have told you that you were out of your mind. But that’s exactly what happened.
I started a company over 25 years ago and it was thriving and growing. But that all changed when I started hearing the Lord whispering softly in my heart that he had something else for me to do. This lasted a long time.
I wasn’t sure what it was, and I was terrified by the thought of leaving what I knew, but I had become restless. I spent over a year in prayer and discernment. I would pray, “Lord, I want to be used by you, for you. Make it clear to me what you have for me.” And I would ask him, “What’s on your mind, Lord? Speak plainly to me.” After a year of prayer and speaking to my spiritual director, I was sure that God had other work for me. I left my company and waited for the Lord. Within a year I received a call from the founders of Praise Academy, a small school in Louisiana.
I knew immediately that it was from the Lord. They needed someone to handle their marketing and fundraising. After praying for confirmation that this was what God intended, I took the job. I wish I could say it’s been a smooth and effortless transition. In fact, it’s been the opposite—raising money is the most difficult thing I have ever done.
I’ve had to combat doubts such as, “What have I done? What was I thinking?” Or, “I just made the biggest mistake of my life.” I often review my discernment process to regain confidence. I did discern well and I did hear the Lord, but God never told me that it would be easy or that I would have immediate success.
I have found myself on my knees more than I ever have before. A wise person once said to me that being at the end of your rope is the best place for you to be with the Lord. I never understood that until now.
I’m more at the end of that rope than I’ve ever been. I’m completely dependent on God—every day, every hour, and almost every minute. I have to rely on the Lord for everything and that’s a great place to be. I’m grateful that he has invited me to be involved in the work of caring for his children. It is pure joy!