November 14: What to Be When I Grow Up?

This morning I went to a Pampered Chef party. It was really fun, and I'd been looking forward to it all week--good food, catching up with friends I haven't seen in a while, and shopping. What's not to love? Anyways, the consultant said she started over a year ago in the hopes of earning $300-400 extra bucks a month to help her family. As a stay-at-home mom, I've often thought a few hundred in extra income would make a big difference for us, too. But she said that the job has exceeded her expectations, and even though she's only doing an average of a show/week, her income is about 3x that.

So I thought, wow. That's a pretty good gig. I think I'm potentially considering becoming a consultant, which is something I never thought I'd be interested in. I enjoy cooking and would certainly use the products, I enjoy speaking, it would be a job I wouldn't have to spend much time on, and it would fit into our family's schedule. She said you can do as many or as little shows as you'd like; it's completely customizable. Something to consider, at least.

But is this my dream job? No. My dream job, at least at this point, would be becoming a bestselling author, traveling around the country {or world?} to do speaking engagements at women's events, and encouraging women around the world to find their identity in Christ and pursue the purpose and plan He has for their life with abandon. But that job doesn't currently exist for me now, maybe not ever. And if it does exist, the paycheck is quite a long way off.

So this stirs in me a couple things. I haven't worked outside the home in so long {7 years?} that I think I've become almost afraid of getting a job in a way, for fear that I'll mess it up and fail. I know that I "work" and that raising children is no small task, but I don't get a paycheck and they can't fire me, as much as they'd like to some days. ;) Job security. 

But seriously. I don't get in trouble if the dishes aren't done or laundry isn't folded. It does make my life and the lives of those I live with easier if I keep up with things, though. So I think, what if I start this Pampered Chef thing and can't tow the line? What if I muck it up? I have trouble keeping my life together now, and I want to add to that orders and parties and scheduling stuff?? What if I write a book and put myself out there, and no one likes it??? What if after all that work {with no paycheck!}, it gets rejected?? All that time down the drain with nothing to show for it. What if they come hear me speak and they don't like what I have to say?? What if they think they were better off just flushing that $40 they paid for the retreat down the toilet?

So the fear paralyzes me. I allow it to make me lazy and selfish. If I don't try, then I can't fail. If I don't put myself out there and be vulnerable, then I can't get hurt. My heart can't get stepped on. So I settle for this mediocre, comfortable life with no great risks. Because you know what I think my real fear is??

What if I succeed?

What if I take that risk, and people like it? What if they would buy the book? What if I could make a difference with something I had to say? Now, that, my friends, is what's truly terrifying. Because then, people would expect things of me. And what if I couldn't live up to that expectation or dropped the ball? All these questions and doubts...

And then I remember, the Lord hasn't given us a spirit of fear but of courage and strength. Fear can be paralyzing, but I don't want it to cripple or define me. Yet, it is terrifying to step out in faith sometimes, isn't it? What makes all the difference is that the God who is asking me to walk by faith is good. And faithful and just and true. He has a plan for our lives, to give us a hope and a future if we will follow Him and obey. And if I succeed at all or ever in this life, it had better not be in my own strength but in His, for His strength is made perfect in our weakness.

So what say you all? Thoughts on the Pampered Chef gig? I know some of you are consultants--do you like it?

Or should I write with abandon and no paycheck {basically, what I do now}? You know, if you think so, you could always share me with your friends. Maybe they will like me and want to hang out with me, too. ;)

Or should I try to do both?