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He Will Not Fail Me (Or You)

If you follow my social media at all, you may have noticed changes. A shift, a recalibration. Maybe you like it; but maybe you don't. Maybe you don't want to follow me anymore. That's ok. Full disclosure, I'm not sure I like it either and I feel like an explanation is in order.

I used to be a “life coach”- as recently as 2 weeks ago, even (don't worry, I'm still coaching... just keep reading). Before that I was a fitness "expert" and entrepreneur, a corporate badass before that, and on and on goes the list... and it was all fine as it was. Sort of. Here's the problem. I'm also a Christian, with a shit ton of tattoos, and I might as well say it - a penchant for swearing (shocker, I know).

I was always made to believe that "good girls" don't swear, they definitely don't have tattoos, they DO wear underwear, they don't enjoy sex and would never smoke weed. If this is true, then I must be broken... and saying "I love Jesus" makes me a hypocrite.

FULL STOP. I can't get down with that.

I'm not perfect; but, I don't think of myself as a hypocrite. I try REALLY hard to be authentic and honest and live out what I teach, coach, and believe. I try to be brave and vulnerable and share the ugly parts of me to help other women, even when it hurts to open up those dark places.

Here's the problem. In trying to be authentic (read: not a hypocrite) and accepted in order to reach women who need my help, I was keeping the single most important thing in my life out of my "public persona"- that thing is that I am a passionate Christian. And in keeping that on the down low, I was in fact being completely untrue to who I am, which is by definition hypocritical (insert firm face palm here).

Ministry has been on my heart for decades and I’ve done my best to ignore God.

Most of that time, I convinced myself that it wasn't actually God talking to me - it was me and my wandering thoughts. But, why was I so resistant? That's easy - ministry is super inconvenient, not too cool, and doesn’t seem like a lot of fun. It means you have to do uncomfortable stuff, it means a higher call to obedience (uggghhhhhhh), and it means owning your shit and surrendering it. It means, you know better and when you know better, you have to do better. Ministry means having unpopular opinions - on BOTH sides of the aisle.

Ministry. Funny, God. Reaaaaaaally funny.

God's persistent, if nothing else.

He dropped me in Africa last summer where so much about how I experience the world and relationships was changed, then he turned me into a small group leader for our high school ministry, then he put me in the worship band, and...and...and. Somewhere in there - toward the end of last year, I even sat down in a coffee shop with my friend and our church's youth pastor, Chris Cummings, and tearfully told him that God was calling me to ministry. I was literally crying. I wasn't crying happy tears - I was actually upset, possibly angry, and definitely mourning the life I was leaving behind. I didn't want it to be true; but, it was- God said to go and minister and I finally caved. Chris sort of smiled and was like "duh."

We talked about the details. HOW is God wanting me to minster? To whom? UGHHHHH. I DON'T KNOW. All I knew was that God wanted me in ministry - as a "job"- not just in my relationships and serving at church. I also knew I was NOT being called to seminary (pretty super thankful for that). The rest was hidden.

A couple months later, God put coaching clients in my books that needed spiritual guidance and support with their faith. I found my relationship with God deepening - it had to. How can I be a guide to someone else without seeking God's guidance. He began transforming my coaching practice - bringing more clients to me that needed spiritual counsel and emboldening my spirit.

Encountering God has become so much a part of each moment of my day and the centerpiece of my decision-making and the way I approach coaching. I could no longer coach separate from God's word. Something had to give. And it did. The message at church a couple weeks ago was the first in a series about Love - specifically that week, "Love Risks" and I knew the risk God needed me to take.

That afternoon, I updated my mission and re-hung my shingle with faith on the top line.

God has continued to move me into His plan and this ministry. Late last week, God said "tattooed, Christian moms" to me and I said "interesting, but ok. I'll play." So, I updated and re-narrowed my niche, overhauled my website, and refreshed the podcast. It's come with ease, it's felt good and right, and it's been yielding fruit. Go figure.

God's doing His thing and it's only taken me 40 years to get on board. I'm a slow learner. Imagine the frustration you feel when your kids don't listen. Now, imagine God when we don't listen. He's been feeling that way about me for 40 years? I'm like, "dude - you should have given up on me a long time ago...but so, SO thankful you didn't."

So, welcome to this ministry(?) that is faith-based coaching for tattooed moms seeking alignment with their purpose. I don't know what else to say.

"Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished." 1 Chronicles 28:20


©2020 by Kristin Benton.

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