I remember graduating form Lansing Community College with a Commercial Art Illustration Associates, hoping to make a difference in the world with creation of useable art – brochures, booklets, cover art, etc. But then my husband went into the military and I was with child. We moved from Norfolk, VA, to San Diego, CA. Two weeks after arriving, he was in a life threatening accident. He got out of the hospital a week before our daughter was born. I was a mom of a baby girl with a husband still healing from a torn diaphragm and aorta, broken pelvis and broken hip bone… on crutches.
Over the next year and a half it was apparent that he was not going to be able to return to full time duty based on the effect of his injuries. He was medically and honorably discharged from the Marine Corp. Our baby girl was a year and a half old. We headed back to MI, living with my parents and then his parents over the next year and a half.
What does this have to do with my career? A lot. Upon getting pregnant, we decided I would stay home with her and be her momma. Then when we went back to MI I attempted to get work as an illustrator, but did not get work. Family began to have me do busiess cards, signs for their vehicles – wooden and magnetic. I made cards I sold for Christmas to people I knew. Then I found I was pregnant with our next baby. We moved to Ann Arbor where my husband worked at the VA Medical Center, I had a baby boy, and continued making cards I sold for extra cash at Christmas. I loved to draw and create things, but was not figuring out how to do it from home. My skills were now obsolete because the computer tech age had swallowed up the commercial art field, changing how commercial art was created. I would need more schooling to continue to get work in my field. We were not in a place financially to make that happen. I decided to begin volunteering at a Pregnancy Counseling Center, teaching the Word in Bible Studies and finding my place in women’s ministries at church, discipleship, etc. Over the years I had used my art for church announcements and articles, but never realized the transition that was taking place in my heart away from art to teaching and pouring into others what the Lord was pouring into me.
This is where my ministry and career began to coexist. I was soaking up God’s Word as part of my own healing from sexual abuse. I loved to share the Word of God with others out of what the Lord was slowly, layer by layer, doing in me. I home schooled a bit with both kids, but I loved to teach women, one-on-one and in Bible Study groups, how the things in their past and current lives had answers from the Word of God. The Bible is a living book, not an ancient text irrelevant to culture. God’s truth for me and them was there – in “His Story” – for my story and their story. Who He was and is and will be for them, is there in its pages, ready to heal their wounds, enable their next steps, give them confidence in a God invisible who had made Himself known and visible, fulfilling promises and continuing to fulfil promises.
There was the beginning of my healing at forty, followed by seeking forgiveness and extending it to others, confronting my own sin and the sin of others in healthy, God-honoring ways. Empty nest and the reading of a book about my God-sized dream. Life Coaching. What is that? Investigation, prayer, counsel from others, encouragement from my husband. Conversation with the Instructor at Christian Coaching Institute where I felt like I had known her forever and God was leading me to my next big step as a woman and believer in Christ, healing and in process with the Lord, wanting to gain skills to help others do the same.
Through school, I figured out my love of questions and details and my spiritual gifts of teaching and discernment and wisdom. I felt the pressure of perfection, that I was not like the other coaches, but that I was a coach the Lord would use in unique places and in unique ways. I wanted to work with wounded women to find their what next. Then I graduated, worked through my practicums, received my certification, and started my blogging and website, putting myself out there to reach those women.
It has been slow. I have broadened my niche statement and then returned to my current niche statement, being even more specific. Not just wounded women, but sexual abuse victims, now married, struggling with the affects of fear, distrust, bitterness, isolation. I know the struggle of that. I know the process of years that took for me to believe God had my back again, that I could trust my husband and stop living in anger and fear and control of every detail of my life, marriage, kids, finances. I had friends who prayed for me, women who shared God’s Word and hugged and cried with me, a husband who was gentle and cared for me, protecting me from anything that would threaten to destroy what God was doing in my life, one day at a time, year by year.
Life Coaching such women will take time:
- time for them to trust my message and know that I am not going to inflict new wounds
- time for them to feel safe sharing their story with me, knowing I get it and can help them move through their minefields of fear and distrust – of God and others
- time for them to realize they are captives – READY to be free to live forward in Christ
- time for them to reach out because they realize they want to live days without fear and distrust, anger and bitterness
- time for them to begin to feel joy and peace, seeing God has a purpose for their pain that heals them and brings glory to Him
If that woman is you, then go back through this series and see my story, discover my heart for you. God wants you to see His extended hand of grace for healing your wounded soul and broken identity. He wants to walk alongside you to create renewed trust in His process. He has brought me to you as a fellow sexual abuse survivor whom He has healed and given compassion for others who have not yet found healing in Him. It is affecting your marriage, your parenting, your confidence as a woman, your daily reactions, words, and behaviors. You are tired of carrying this weight by yourself. I know it gets too heavy to carry alone. I know it wears you out. I know it hurts and makes you weep to just want ONE NORMAL DAY like you see others having all around you. God knows. God sees. God wants you to be whole, letting HIM avenge your past as you learn to live forward with confidence in Him and without fear.
P.S.: This is so much more than a career to me. It is a mission to be used by God and make a way to support the husband who has always supported me and watched God heal and grow me into where I am today. If I can do both, it will all be worth it to me.
So many ways to contact me:
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Contact Coach Kristin form: www.unchanginggodchangingyou.com/contact-coach-kristin
- Phone: 423-743-0032 (Private and confidential for you to leave a message.)