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Unexpected Gifts


Photo credit to Alyssa Lanae Photography

Amanda never imaged herself as a married, stay-at-home mom to two young children. Looking back, she is amazed to see God’s hand in the many unexpected gifts of the last eight years.


Amanda worked as a nurse in cardio-pulmonary rehabilitation at the hospital. Her supervisor casually mentioned to her one day that she knew a guy on her worship team at her church. She said he was going to stop by the hospital and asked if she would like to meet him. Amanda was not a fan of these types of setups; however, she reluctantly agreed. She met Jonathan and they awkwardly exchanged hellos and small talk. Amanda went on with her day and never heard anything more from Jonathan.


Three years later…yes, you read that right, Amanda’s supervisor approached her one day with, “Remember that guy who you met at the hospital a few years ago? He wants to go out with you.”


Amanda couldn’t believe it! She said her supervisor introduced them again via email.


“We exchanged some emails and then we met at Panera for our first date. We dated for six months, got engaged and were married in a year,” said Amanda. “We knew we were meant for each other. Jonathan has been a huge blessing in my life, and I couldn’t imagine life without him!”


Amanda later learned that when she met Jonathan previously at the hospital, he was already in a relationship and the timing wasn’t right.


“God worked it all out. It’s pretty awesome to find someone who shares the same values, especially since we were married later in life. I know God saved our marriage for each other,” said Amanda.


Amanda went through a lot of changes in a short amount of time. She went from coming to terms with being single and being committed to her nursing career to meeting Jonathan, getting married, and having children.


“I honestly never thought I would get married, let alone have children.”


Amanda said that as soon as God blessed her with a child, she knew God was calling her to stay home and care for her family. However, it was not without struggles especially since she loved her profession and always thought she would practice nursing.


After Amanda’s first child was born, she dropped back to working one day a week. When her son was born 18 months later, it did not make sense financially for her to work with daycare costs. After 16 years as a professional nurse, she resigned from her position.


“God was working on softening my heart. He stretches us and grows us. I knew God called me to stay at home and He shows me that daily in many ways.”


“I love my children dearly and I’m super thankful to be able to stay at home, but I also miss my career,” said Amanda. “I miss the relationships with my patients and co-workers. I miss the comradery of all of us working together towards our goal of caring for our patients.”


It’s all about contentment and it’s something Amanda admits she has struggled with in her life.


“I know that if I was working, I would probably want to be at home,” laughed Amanda. “I realized that if I want to be content, I need to be at peace with knowing I am where God is calling me.”


Amanda said the verse, “Godliness contentment is a great gain” from 1 Timothy 6 has been a big help to her.


“I know that if I choose contentment in the everyday things, God will bless that. If I grumble and complain about things, I am not rejoicing in the Lord or being thankful for the situation He has placed me in. When I have a hard day, I look into my children’s eyes and I am reminded of God’s love for me and His faithfulness. That’s what motivates me and brings me peace.”


Reflection Questions

1. Looking back, Amanda sees God’s perfect timing with how she met Jonathan. Have there been times in your life when it didn’t make sense at the time but you now see how God’s plan unfolded in His time?


2. How do you find contentment today?




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