When I first moved to The Burg I couldn’t find a job to save my life. I’m talking application after application. Job search after job search. A lot of money spent printing resumes and cover letters. I mean…even Taco Bell didn’t want to hire me. Taco Bell!! (I love me some 7 Layer Burritos, but that’s beside the point). I never realized how much worth we (or at least I) put into having a job. It seems to be the ‘American Way’ to have a ‘good job’ and be able to ‘provide’ for yourself and your family. When I couldn’t even get an interview at a fast food restaurant, I felt my morale hit a low. What was wrong with me? Why didn’t anyone want to hire me?
I’ve always been blessed with work in the sense of having nice, comfortable, supportive jobs. Growing up I had a network of family and friends that enabled me to work at different places that I enjoyed. When I moved to Hawaii I got hired at Starbucks right after applying, and I grew to absolutely love it there. I was promoted to a shift lead at my six month review (I say this not as a brag but to illustrate a point). I’m not the most business savvy or incredible butt buster (is that a term?), but I work hard and I like to think I have a good head on my shoulders.
That being said, for the first year in The Burg, I was jobless. When summer rolled around and I had no new job prospects, I bit the bullet and called the lady who my friend had been cleaning for. Needless to say, cleaning disgusting college apartments in the 100 degree heat of summer was not a high point for me.
As I kneeled on linoleum floors and scrubbed toilet after toilet (seriously, the number was high. Maybe triple digits. I don’t really want to think about it) I felt my ‘job morale’ sink even lower. I joked that the cleaning job was a good example to ‘stay in school, kids!’ (I was about to enter my last year of college) but really, I felt ashamed and worthless.
During those months of cleaning I would listen to a variety of music, radio stations, and podcasts. I started subscribing to some awesome sermons, including ones from my old church in Hawaii. One evening in the middle of this joblessness/cleaning despair, K told me something along the lines of “God must have something really awesome saved up for you if He’s keeping you from every other job”. I think I laughingly agreed and another topic came up, but later that night, her words really hit me deep in my heart
So, the next day, as I scrubbed toilets and bathtubs and kitchen sinks, I listened to a sermon, and I said a simple prayer. Basically, I asked God to show me where He wanted to put me. And yes, I asked Him to show me NOW.
Now, we know God works on His own schedule. He has His own timing. And yes, His timing is always WAY better than our own, even if it doesn’t seem like it at the time. And this is no exception.
As part of my undergrad degree, I needed an internship revolving around something social work-y. In my countless scours of the internet I found a job posting for an AmeriCorps position at a place in my town. Upon further website investigation, I found that there was a volunteer application WITH a spot to check if you wanted to intern. So, I filled out yet another job application, dressed up, dropped it off at the office, and…nothing.
A think a week or two went by, and I stopped by again. Yes, they had received it. No, they didn’t have any further questions. Then, I stopped by again. Or maybe I called. I don’t remember the exact details-I think my brain blocked out this soul sucking time of my life. Just kidding. But really.
Long story short, the HR manager finally called me and set up an interview. Not hours after the interview, she let me know that they wanted me! I could practically hear the angels singing. SOMEONE WANTED ME! No, they weren’t paying me, and no, I didn’t really know exactly what I would be doing, but still! Someone actually wanted me.
A month and a half into my internship they wanted to hire me. Yes, with pay! And awhile after that, I shifted roles again. And now, after almost two years at the glorious place that said yes to me, I am fully reflecting at the goodness God had in mind making me wait and placing me there.
The experiences I have had are priceless. I have no doubt that they and the learning I was able to write about in my narrative got me into my #1 choice grad school. The interactions I have had with clients have reaffirmed that I am in the right field. The people I met there have become near and dear to my heart. My first manager and his family have become huge sources of joy, and their little ones have lit up my life each week. The man I used to share an office with has become like an uncle; the girls I work with became confidants. That HR manager that finally gave me the time of day has become a positive role model of both a girl boss and a woman of God-and her precious daughter makes my heart smile time and time again.
And you know why? Because God made me wait. He looked over my begging and rolled eyes and pleads of getting hired at Taco Bell, and saved my time for a place that needed me-and more importantly, that I needed.
And it has been one of the biggest blessings in my life so far.
“When God tells you no, tell Him thank you. He’s holding out for something better.”