You won’t see Diane Walker out and about as much as before. These days she is stepping down from most of her community involvements and learning to say “no” to activity, something that does not come easily to this active matriarch of the family of “Working Walkers.” Being busy is in Diane’s DNA. Busyness is a form of fulfillment, but also a form of escape.
When Diane was a little girl, she was molested by her uncle. She confided in her mother, but nothing was done about it. It seemed like nothing could be done about it. This made Diane feel like she did not matter, like no one cared. She felt unimportant.
As she grew older, she worked extra hard to get validation, believing she had to earn her worth. Staying busy gave her a sense of value, and also kept others at a safe distance. Yet she still sought attention. She married the first man who proposed, after barely two months’ acquaintance, thinking, “I’m not enough. I’m damaged goods. Nobody’s going to want me.” So she married “too young, too fast, to the wrong guy,” Diane puts it. Not long after getting married, her husband left her. Soon afterwards she married another man, Steve. Their marriage was rocky, and they, too, eventually divorced.
Diane’s childhood trauma had hurt her ability to trust others, especially men. At times, even God. But God had a plan to restore her trust and her marriage to Steve.
Three years after their divorce, in a move that was as surprising to Diane as it was to their friends, Steve and Diane remarried in a sweet backyard ceremony. God had convicted them of the impact their divorce was having on their children, and so they started afresh, working toward a healthier marriage. There were signs of progress.
But she was still haunted on the inside. Diane managed her insecurities with work. She would keep everything busy on the outside so no one would know the emptiness and lack of value she felt on the inside.
Then one year ago Diane started Faithwalking. Faithwalking has helped her develop guiding principles for the type of person she wants to be and the type of life she wants to lead. One of those principles is to create time and space to find worth outside of work. To that end, Diane has recently stepped down from the leading role at Compassion Katy, a non-profit that Diane founded and where she has worked for the past nine years. Stepping down to enter into a season of waiting on God was a huge step of courage that came out of her experience with Faithwalking.
“The enormity of stepping back from Compassion Katy is huge for me. I’ve also stepped down from all my other volunteer opportunities because I need to seek what God wants me to do instead of driving the engine by what I think I should do to get my value. I need to learn to be okay, even in my not doing.”
Besides helping her find the courage to say no, Faithwalking is also strengthening her marriage. In fact, Diane says that her marriage is better now than ever. “People think marriage can’t be restored, but we’re proof that it can. It takes a lot of work, and you have to be willing to sacrifice a lot. Faithwalking has brought us to a place where I never thought we could be.”
Diane is finding a new source of strength in this new season of waiting. She is a life being transformed through the healing and restorative power of the God who makes all things new.