Written By: Brittany Putman
Ten years ago when I graduated from high school, I was a completely different person. I had always been the quiet one in my group of friends and I didn’t really care if that ever changed or not. I was going to school to be a teacher in a nearby town, dating my high school sweetheart, and under the assumption that I would never need to leave my safe little town. I thought I had it all figured out. Boy was I wrong.
I had a plan for my life. That was probably my first problem.
But none-the-less I went to school, worked hard and I just knew that once I graduated from college that I would teach in the local school, marry that high school sweetheart and that would be my life. But of course, that’s not what happened.
As my senior year of college came to an end, I found myself without that high school boyfriend and zero job prospects. It seemed as if each day my plan was slipping further away. Then, for some reason still unclear to me, I decided that I would just go on a trip after college. I mean, why not? It was perfect timing and it would probably be my only chance to see the world. Plus I really felt like God might want me to take a trip; to do some good while I figured out what to do. I really don’t know what I was thinking, or if I was thinking at all because this was so not me but I went anyway.
And so that’s how I ended up in an orphanage in the Philippines in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. While I was there I met children who had never celebrated their birthday before and entered homes that we wouldn’t let our dogs live in. I met men and women who were passionate to share the Gospel and others who were hungry to hear it. I experienced things that you just can’t experience while living in the United States, and I’ll never know if I did any good there or not but when I came home I found myself a totally different person. I was ready to follow God’s plan for my life instead of my own. Let’s face it; my plan wasn’t very good in the first place and my dreams were far too small.
I spent 3 months in the Philippines and then 1 more year at home before I made the move to Louisville to study missions and pursue a career as a foreign missionary. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing but I was following God and that was all that mattered. Once again, I had a plan and I just knew that this was the right path for my life to follow. I mean, why wouldn’t God send me overseas if I was willing to go?
Once again I was wrong. I spent two years in grad school before my money ran out and I started teaching full time. I loved my teaching job so very, very much! But at the same time I felt like my life wasn’t going anywhere. So again I prayed that God would lead me and send me where He wanted me to go. I decided that I would spend two more years in Louisville waiting on God to show me what to do and then I would either pack my bags for home or the other side of the world. I know, it sounds crazy but those were my two options!
Once again God’s plan was not my own. At the beginning of my second year of waiting in Louisville, my roommate suggested that I try online dating. I know that sounds crazy and dangerous but she met her boyfriend (now husband) online and so I figured why not. I didn’t think anything would come of it and decided that I would never actually meet someone from the internet but I signed up anyway. One month later I met Brian. Six months later we were engaged. It all happened so fast that I nearly missed it!
Now, we have been married for ten months, we live in a small Kentucky town right on the Ohio River, and I finally feel like I am where I am supposed to be. My plan was nothing like God’s plan. Instead of my safe little hometown, I am 300 miles away. Instead of teaching, I am working in the local church. Instead of ministering to others overseas, I am sharing my stories and the love of Jesus through the internet.
I used to be the quiet girl who would gladly blend into her surroundings and never made a fuss. Now I’m sharing my story with whoever will listen. God’s plan for my life is so much better than my own and I know that I better not get too comfortable because I never know when God will move me again!
Brittany Putman has been married to her husband, Brian, for almost a year. She enjoys taking walks with her husband and dog, reading good books, and practising her cooking skills. She lives in Kentucky and works as a Church Assistant and Freelance Writer. She is a child of God striving to become a Proverbs 31 wife. She frequently writes about practising grace and celebrating love as a newlywed at Grace, Love, Life.