I had a million and one dreams and aspirations when I was kid and none of them involved sitting at a desk for 40 hours a week.
I bet none of you dreamt that’s how you’d spend your time either.
That’s why I got a job as a reporter, so I’d rarely have to sit at a desk.
I already told you about how I up and quit my dream job as a reporter one day without another job lined up. My dream turned out to be something I was meant to do but not meant to do forever.
Well, the days came just like I knew they would and I didn’t have anything lined up to jump into.
My last week at my job as a reporter, I had several interviews. I had applied everywhere, so I was willing to interview everywhere. I was willing to work anywhere until I found that “dream job.”
I was offered a job on Wednesday night and my last day at the news station was Friday. Woah. I see you, God.
The job I was offered was not my dream job nor the job I went to school hoping to be at one day. I had never in a million years imagined I’d be where I was going. I didn’t particularly want to go there, either. But I knew I had to have a job, and, at the end of the day, it was a stepping stone and experience, and that’s better than nothing at all.
I think a lot of times we leave something because we are being called to exit, whether that’s a job, a relationship, a city, or anything else we are no longer meant to be with, but then we wait in the wrong way.
Being patient in waiting on your next step is great and beautiful and necessary. But waiting does not mean not doing anything. God wants you to wait on Him and listen to Him, but sometimes He leads you to an “in-between.”
I’m confident that’s where I am right now. And you might be there too. And that’s ok.
There’s no rule book that says when you are supposed to be where, so stop freaking out.
You might be in the job you’ll be at forever and be happy. You might be in the second of 15 jobs. You might be in the first of 100 jobs. The whole point is that as long as we are pursuing God and listening to Him, we are where we are supposed to be or on the track back there. Period.
A lot of times when it comes to something like a job, we want to just wait around and not do our part. Yes, God calls us to rest. Yes, God calls us to take time to pray and make a decision. And yes, if you are financially able to do so, give yourself time to be without a job until you find the next one, but don’t just stop and wait for Him to throw you a bone if you aren’t chasing after Him and doing your part.
Again, if I had my pick of jobs, I wouldn’t have picked the one I accepted, but I knew deep down that He was pushing me to that job. It didn’t matter what I wanted because it isn’t about me. It’s about Him and other people. Remember that little acronym? JOY: Jesus, Others, Yourself – We learned it in VBS, and it’s still true.
Everything we do should be about Jesus then others then, lastly, us. The world says,”Be selfish, look out for number one, do you.” But God says, “Be selfless, look out for your fellow man, do the right thing.”
So, I go to work at as the Marketing Director at an ice complex every day not because it’s glamorous or earns me recognition or pays me a ton of money, but because I know it’s the next step on the journey God is leading me on. And I know, in some way, at some point, He will show me “why.”
If I decide I want a high level Marketing/PR job like many communications-minded people, so this is where I start: building a brand for a company who needs one from the ground up, improving social media followings, planning community events, helping the kids here, growing the Special Olympics program, plugging a non-profit organization for athletes into the community, and more than anything, being a light for the people I interact with, all the while, building my own brand and my skillset, which is necessary for any and every job.
It is not about where you are or what you’re doing, it’s about how you do it. And it’s not always easy. You won’t always want to do it. And you may be in your “in-between” stage for a long time before God sees that it is time for your next adventure. That’s not a bad thing; that means He wants you to grow just a little more before you move on.
They might need you longer and you might need to gain a few more skills that will be necessary at that next job.
I started out at the news station doing digital producing and that is not what I wanted to do. But I use the skills I learned in that position every single day at my current marketing job. And that’s how God showed me “the why” of that season of my life that I struggled to understand. And I know that he has reasons for what I’m doing as the Marketing Director of an Iceplex. I have already learned skills and programs that I know I’ll need for something later on. And had I not been put here, I wouldn’t have had the same opportunities that might just lead me to something bigger.
We are “big picture” people these days. It’s hard to focus on anything but the end goal. But, God is very concerned with the in-between. My favorite message I’ve ever heard (I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again) was from Pastor Christ Hodges. It was about the “process” and how God works on us during that in-between phase and that’s why He loves that season more than He loves what we think of as the “finish lines” of our seasons. (You can watch/listen here.)
This idea goes for anything you’re going through. If you just got out of a relationship, you might be single for a while, but that’s not because God isn’t working; it’s because He IS working and preparing you and your future spouse for one another. That doesn’t happen overnight. Nothing good in life happens overnight. It might seem that way to us every now and then, but God was working even when we weren’t noticing.
Those in-between seasons can be beautiful if we choose to let them. We can learn and grow and take what we learn over to the next season. That’s called life: learning lessons and building on them forever.
I know that wherever you are: finish line, in-between, starting line, God is preparing you for something. He always is. There’s always a next and we are always working toward Heaven. We are working not to get there but to prepare our hearts for that final prize.
In the midst of your in-between-ness, just pause and reflect on what you’re learning and know that God will show you “why” later. He doesn’t have to do that for us, but He is kind, so He does.
I have to do that. Sometimes I think, “How did I end up here in this city, at this job, with these duties?” And then I remember, “Because God.” He wants me where I am and so I’ll do what I’m supposed to until He decides it’s time for a new season.
Jobs are not all about money or power or position; they are about how we are furthering The Kingdom. You might be working in retail or the food industry or at a gas station or somewhere else where you may not feel respected or dignified, but guess what? You are. You are a respected, dignified Child of God. And what you are doing, the people you are serving, the light you are shining is making a difference.
Again, I doubt no one dreamt of a 40-hour a week desk job, and not everyone has one, but some of us do. And that doesn’t make you any less accomplished than anyone else. There’s no comparison chart, so stop trying to make one up.
Keep pressing on. Keep your eyes open and your heart thankful, no matter what the day is like, what the season is like, what the moment is like.
One major thing I learned in quitting a job and immediately finding another one like a magic trick is that God provides and is always faithful. I’m not so sure I really knew what prayer was until that month of darkness, worry, and finding real faith, but now I do. And that sure seems like “the why” to me.