Twenty-seven years ago, I pulled into a driveway and a gangly, adorable teenager hopped into my car. Nikki was recommended to me by her mother who said she had a nack with kids. We were driving to my house when I asked Nicole how old she was? “I’m twelve,” she said. Well, I almost turned around and drove her back home, but I’m glad I didn’t. Nicole became one of my kid’s favourite babysitters, along with her sister Rachelle. The girls were fun, bubbly, and the best babysitters a mother could have asked for!
Life With Nikki
A Little About Me
Let me introduce myself…I am Nicole Welch, married for 18 years to a man in ministry and mother of five exceptionally brilliant, Jesus needing children. I pray that as you peak into my life, you see my humanness and my desperate need for Jesus on a daily basis. When Jesus returns, He will give me a flawless eternity, but for now, this is what I must work with.
My Daily Routine
A typical morning in my home looks like rolling out of bed one leg at a time, guzzling coffee from my Wonder Woman mug (a gift from my kids that is both encouraging and a bit tongue in cheek), then getting my two oldest daughters off to school. After they are out the door, I pray that the youngest will stay asleep long enough so that I can get some school work done. Then I get the next two up and get their homeschooling started and get the youngest dressed and fed. My husband helps with our routine until he heads off to work. Somewhere in all this, we all eat breakfast.
My Joys and Dreams
I am currently studying social work at a local university, and it is a BIG dream of mine to wear that cap and gown!!! It only took 22 years to finish it! Between dirty diapers and teenage eye rolls, I am living out my dreams (minus a European Disney Cruise with the kiddos). I realize these are precious days!
My family brings me incredible joy and yet as I sit here, my youngest is desperately trying to press down on the power button on my laptop… family life brings out the very best and worst in me! Don’t get me wrong, I would not have it any other way. The chaos, the slender budget and unique pressures of ministry life are exactly what God uses to stretch me even though sometimes I feel like pulling my hair out or having a good irrational cry.
Struggles Of My Day
Now to reveal a little about myself and an issue that I have been wrestling with for some time now….
Under the surface of my extroverted personality is a woman who desperately struggles with acceptance. When my husband took on a position of a youth pastor, I honestly believed that I was not equipped to do the role of pastor’s wife. My own fears of rejection and insecurity would make walking through the church almost debilitating. Toss in a pinch of conflict, and this was a recipe for complete disaster. God had obviously made a mistake. I was not equipped like other wives in the church, and I was completely unusable. I have an incredible knack for putting Bible verses into VBS rap tunes…but let’s be honest here people, this is no spiritual gift.
This type of insecurity has implications as a mother too. We all know full well how we think of ourselves has an effect on our kids. I have four daughters, so the pressure is on to lead well on the issue of insecurity. My Wonder Woman legacy was facing impending doom.
So, what is a girl like me to do? The obvious answer was to become a hermit or develop a flu virus that only hits on Sunday mornings or social gatherings. Clearly, my brilliant plan had some major flaws… so now what? I bunkered down in God’s word, and I came up with these three simple questions that I ask myself on a regular basis. I call it my “Insecurity Inventory” …. clever eh?
Moments With God
Am I right with God? Making sure that I am in the right standing with God counts. If I am in sin, whether that be jealousy, competition or conflict…. then insecurity will rear its ugly head. I might need to accept that your latest social media post about your perfectly executed recipe looks better than my failed top sirloin. I give it to God, and I repent. Sometimes my insecurity is really a prompt to get right with God.
Am I at peace with others? In this life, it is impossible to have the acceptance and validation from everyone…and even believers are not immune to conflict:
From my end, I must do my best to live peaceably with all people. I cannot control whether or not someone wants to hold a grudge against me, but I must be willing, desirous, and proactive for peace. I must evaluate whether I’ve done my part to resolve, restore and reconcile the relationships in my life. However, I am not responsible for when others do not desire unity. This has been the BIGGEST challenge for this self-confessed people pleaser!
Who is my God? I am not responsible for how others perceive me or if they choose to love me. I may not get the acceptance of others, but I am responsible for myself and my actions. I must be accountable for my sin and be right before God. I must continuously press on loving and serving those that God has put in my life regardless of their response to me. It is easy to put the validation of others before God. I want to please God, but I admit that my desire to please others often takes first place. This is most often where insecurity takes hold of me.
Insecurity is one of that day by day, one degree to the next sort of spiritual growth experiences. I have in no way mastered the voices of self-doubt, but God has used these ministry experiences to boil up some major weaknesses in my character and reveal areas in my life that need a Christ overhaul. In those moments of self-doubt, I take a few moments and do a spiritual inventory. This clarifies whether my insecurity is a sin issue that needs to be dealt with or if my desperate desire to be accepted has reared its ugly head.
I can’t do life apart from God. Trust me, I’ve tried, and I’ve landed smack on my face. My relationship with Christ is my lifeline and my compass. God speaks to me through scripture and it realigns my heart daily! God’s word affirms:
When we give Christ complete Lordship of our lives, our identity is through Him! Who needs Wonder Woman when we can have Jesus!
*Nicole is not alone in fearing God’s calling and feeling unequipped for a task. Read how God asked another woman to talk to a homeless man and the incredible story that followed. Click HERE
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