Pivot: A Story About Obedience

I was sitting in a theater watching my 12 year-old daughter dance with two of my best friends when I heard myself say, “My greatest regret will be not finishing my dance degree.”

And then there it was.

Some months passed and because we don’t abide regrets around here, I was registered at our local, state college to finish my dance degree and had all the details covered.

In a time when I often felt confined, now a space for possibility, for movement and for freedom opened in front of me. Everything felt good and hopeful.

I know preemptive prayer is critical, but I rarely wait for an answer to act. Instead, my method is to strive forward with unmatched intensity and focus toward what I want and listen for that “check in my spirit.”

It’s a messy process to follow Jesus this way.


The “check” came a few days before classes started.

I can only describe it as a knowing weight. On my first day of class, as I drove away from my home, my daughters, the life I was living so fully, I felt my soul lagging behind. It was like the tires of my car were melting into the road, slowing me down with every revolution away. And my heart agreed with them.

Don’t go.

What happened? When I set out, I had felt so free and encouraged and brave. Now my heart was happy to not move forward.

Because I’m stubborn, I completed a few weeks of classes before the Holy Spirit spoke loudly. He said, through the lips of one of my very beautiful teachers, “Pivot.” And I knew I couldn’t avoid what was coming next.

Pivot. Dang it.

And in a glimpse he let me see what it would be like if I barreled forward with finishing my dance degree. Not only would I be away from my little girls more than I wanted, we would struggle to pay for the extras we would need to make it happen. And my husband would struggle with balancing my absence in our home. And just like that, my heart didn’t need it anymore.

In my obedience, if I pivoted, my family could be protected from all of that.

I withdrew from all my classes. I lost a few hundred dollars and had to explain my decision to more than a few people. Now, my life is weird and messy as I try to fill the holes left by no school and a whole lot of childcare I don’t need.

But I have no regrets. Not a one. And I feel so free. And encouraged. And brave.

More than that, I am so grateful for God’s gentleness and his permission. In this experience, he allowed me a moment to turn back toward something I had loved so much in my youth, so that I could then pivot to let it go.

And be at peace.

“Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you.” -Psalm 116:7

Pivot Meditation

Affirmation: I can always turn.

(OR “There is no shame in pivoting.” OR just “Pivot.”)

Scripture: Psalm 116: 7 NIV

Music for Reflection: Defender

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