Fear is the mind killer
There are many factors to the life of a fire-fighter that a mere mortal would consider “off-putting”.
Being a mere mortal myself, I turned my mind to the daunting proposal I had set before myself. Becoming a fire fighter was going to take a lot of hard work and dedication. Not only by myself, but my wife and my kids also.
I discussed the possibility at length with my wife. She was very familiar with my restlessness over my desire to leave my career field (for 8 years or so). She gave it some serious consideration, reflection, and prayer. I will not pretend to be able to speak for her, but she came to me a few days later and said “I am behind you 100%.” As a man, this was electrifying, liberating, and terrifying. I now had all of the license I needed: permission from God (possibly?) permission from myself, and permission from my better half. It was time to get going.
Quick Note: I think I mentioned this in an earlier post, but I had been praying for years to change careers. At every step of the way, I got the overwhelming sense that God was not granting me permission to move on to something else. This time I did not have that feeling when I prayed.
As far as I could see the largest hurdle for us would be financial. My current career is in information technology. I have worked as a software engineer, a security engineer, network engineer, a systems analyst, a systems engineer, and a few other positions along those lines. Needless to say, these all pay very well. A fire fighter (in the beginning) makes substantially less than those positions (did I mention substantially????). We were going to have to make drastic changes in our lifestyle, in the hopes that we would also be making drastic (and upward) changes in the quality of our lives. As my pastor says, lifestyle does not equal quality of life. In talking with other fire fighters, this is abundantly clear to me.
We are placing our faith in God to provide for us in the hard times ahead. We feel this decision has been finally been blessed. We both have this feeling after many nights of prayer, and many open doors. (See earlier caveat about speaking for my wife)
My wife and I are overcoming our fears and hesitations. She is much better at it than I am. I still harbor some fears over money, my ability, and trusting God. Her faith in me is infectious, but her faith in God is a comfort and helps me to remember where my rock is, in Jesus.
The life that I am leading is rich, fulfilling, rewarding, and provides very well for my family. The life that I am leaning into will be that and more. I will also have fulfillment in my work beyond the interpersonal relationships. I will get to touch lives at their lowest, and make a positive impact in this community that I love. Every day of this journey has increased my faith in Jesus and His promises. In turn that faith will carry me through what’s to come. I hope that my journey will be illuminating for others and maybe give Him some of the glory that He so richly deserves.