Saturday, July 27, 2013

...but I don't want to build an ark.

Note:  On Wednesday July 17, I interviewed for a job at a local elementary school.  It wasn't just 'a' job, it was a wonderful job that I would've loved to get.  It would provide for our family's financial needs and it would've been a job I could stay with until retirement.  I am so tired of job-hopping!  The interview went very, very well and I left feeling extremely confident.  I tried to tell myself not to get my hopes up because there have been other interviews for other jobs where I felt the same & those didn't work out.  But as time passed, I couldn't help but get more excited about it and with each passing day, I grew more certain that it would work out.  All of my friends kept saying things like "I just have a feeling this is IT.  You're gonna get it!"  On Tuesday July 23, I found out that I didn't get the job.  They went with another candidate.  This is the culmination of my prayers since getting the news.

Tuesday July 23
Me:  Why God?  Why didn't I get it?  It seemed so perfect.  It wasn't just about THIS job.  It was about so much more.  You KNOW how bad we needed it.  You KNOW we are struggling to survive every month.  WHY can't I just find a job I can enjoy that I can stay with until I retire?  Why do you keep dangling these jobs in front of me only to yank them away?  Why, God?  Why do you let us struggle so much?  It really is kind of hacking me off that we've been in this same boat for so long.  Seriously God, not cool.  Fix it!!

God:  silence.  (or at least it felt like silence)

Later the same evening:
Me:  God, have you totally forgotten us?  It sure feels that way.  I know you haven't, but it feels like I'm praying to the ceiling.  We left a job that paid well because you asked us to.  We took a giant paycut but trusted you to provide.  You have, but...it's been so hard.  We started tithing again.  We serve at church.  We give every time we have a chance.  We love people who are unlovable.  We are good people. What's up???  Isn't it our turn for life to be easy for a while? 

This sucks, God.  I'm mad.  I just wanted this one stinkin' job. 

Why can't you fix all this financial stuff we battle every month?  It's exhausting.  It feels like we've been climbing this same mountain for 4 years and you keep letting us slip backward.  This time it feels like you actually kicked us backward.  It's not even 1 step forward & 2 steps back.  It's more like 10 steps backward, 1/2 a shuffle forward then another 30 steps back.  Why God?  Why don't you just FIX IT?!  You can!  I know you can!

sigh.

I know that your ways are higher than mine.  Stop sending people to remind me.  I know you have a plan.  I've read Jeremiah 29:11.  Can you please just hurry up & get us to the top of the mountain?  I'm so battle worn I don't think I can stand much more.  I'm so tired of this mess.

God:  (spoken through the mouths of sooooo many precious friends)  Just wait.  What I have for you is much better.  I know it's hard.  I'll provide.  Just hang in there.

Me:  Sorry dude.  It's really not that easy.

Wednesday July 24
I went to our youth group's VBS in the park where the Bible story, the memory verse and the song we sang all carried the theme of "trust God".

Me:  Yeah, I heard the story & the song & the verse.  I get it.  Well played.
But I still don't understand why you didn't just give me the job.  Wouldn't it be simpler to just let me get a good job that I can LOVE and be done with all this money trouble garbage?  Ugh.  I hate money.  I hate struggling.

God:  Do you trust me?

Me:  (big pause)  Yes.  But...

God:  Stop it.  Not buts.  Do you trust me?

Me:  I'm not sure.  It kind of feels like you're not even hearing me.  I want to trust you, but I just feel so beaten down.  I KNOW scriptures say you don't leave me or forsake me.  I remember the million times that you've done miracles & provided in some crazy way.  But I'm tired of being THAT girl--the poster child for the charity donations.  It makes me crazy to have to struggle & fight & beg you for provision over and over while I watch my friends go on vacations and buy new cars and talk about shopping.  Lord, it's brutal.  I get jealous & angry.  I want to do those things.  I don't need it every day.  Just once in a while!  Please, Lord.  Can't life get easier for us?  I don't even know how we'll make it until the 31st.  We have $14 left in the bank account.  And we have to get gas & groceries at least 1 more time between now and then.  HOW am I going to do that?

God:  Do you trust me?

Me:  I'm working on it.

Thursday July 25
Me:  I don't really feel like talking to you today.  I'm still ticked.

God:  That's okay.  I'll wait.

(late evening)

Me:  Ok, so you made sure I made a sizable dollar figure on that babysitting job.  I see how you did that.  I can buy some groceries now.  And mom gave me a few things from her pantry.  And put some gas in the van this morning.

Sigh.

Geez, you really like rubbing my nose in it don't you?

Maybe we'll make it to the end of the month after all.

(sigh of resignation)  God, I feel like Job.  Where is my sackcloth?  My dirt to sit in?  I just want to cry.  I'm so tired of fighting this battle.  I feel like I've been taking a beating for 4 years.

God:  Trust me.

Me:  Good grief.  Stop it.  I'm working on that.  Can you please just help me find a job that I can love on the kids' school schedule?  {After this I promptly sat down at the computer to look up job openings in several local school districts.  I applied for a few.}

Friday July 26
Me:  Thank you for the gift card to Walmart.  And the check from the doctor's office.  I sure don't remember ever overpaying, but hey, whatever.  If they say we're due a refund, who am I to argue?  We can sure use it!  Maybe we will make it to the end of the month after all.

God:  Remember Moses?  He was a picture of obedience & faith.  Do you remember what happened when he questioned me, when he lost faith for a short time?

Me:  Yeah, his life got harder.  He lost the chance to see the Promised Land.

God:  Yep.  Remember Abraham?  He was such an example of faith in me until he and his wife decided that I couldn't give them a baby like I promised & decided to take matters into their own hands.  Remember what happened?

Me:  Things got really screwed up.  Everything was suddenly complicated & painful & difficult.  He should've waited on y......
Crap!  I see what you did there.

God:  Chuckle.  I love it when you catch on.
Remember Gideon?  You just taught the kids about him in Sunday School last week.

Me:  Yeah.  He had a tiny army of men up against the gigantic enemy army.  They all worried & asked how they could possibly win with so few people, but you told them to trust you.  And they did.  And they won.

God:  Yes.  BECAUSE HE TRUSTED ME.  Do you see a pattern here?

Me:  I think so.  Things got HARDER for Moses & Abraham when they didn't just act in faith & trust you.  They made their own lives harder because of their own choices.  I don't think you were punishing them though were you?  They just screwed things up by freaking out & not waiting on you.

God:  Right.  Now....do you remember Noah?

Me:  Wait.  I don't want to build an ark.

God:  I'm not asking you to build an ark.  I'm asking you to consider Noah's story.  It hadn't rained in a million years, so when I asked him to build a huge boat in his driveway, people thought he was crazy!  When he told them it was because a flood was coming, they thought he'd lost his ever-lovin' mind.  When he called out & all the animals marched onto the boat and he shut the door the neighbors were certain he was nuts.  But soon enough the rain began to fall.  The earth was covered with water.  All the remaining animals and all the nay-sayers died.

Me:  But Noah and his family and all the animals on the ark survived.

God:  Yes, right.  And why did they survive?

Me:  Because they trusted you....because they trusted you.
Oh Lord.  Make me a Gideon.  Make me like Noah.  Father, don't let me make my life be harder like Abraham & Moses simply because I'm worried about money.  Father, continue to provide for us until your timing is right for me to find another job. 

Help me to trust you.

God:  I love you, child.  Trust me.


I am sure this won't be the end of mine & God's discussions about this.  Obviously I'm a mess.  But I'm really trying to trust Him.  And wait on Him.  I really don't have a problem trusting that He has a plan & it will be best.  It's His timing I struggle with.


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