First things first. Of all the songs in the history of the world, as I sit down with my cup of coffee to write this post for you…I’m bumping some Biebs. I suggest you put “Sorry” on softly in the background before reading this post.
On Monday of this week I wrote a post about hope. If you don’t mind me saying so…it was beautiful. In my personal Bible study that morning I found some amazing truths that really spoke to me and I shared them articulately. But, since the passing of my father, the dark of night has brought with it the dark of thoughts.
So I owe you an apology.
Because Monday night, one week after the death of my father, I got an e-mail. This e-mail was from a non-profit organization that I have felt called to work for almost two years now. I have applied to over 20 jobs, networked, and attended informational meetings with this group that I am very passionate about. I’ve applied for jobs I was qualified for and jobs I was under-qualified for and jobs I was over-qualified for. “This ones too hot! This ones too cold! This one was just right!” A job as an audio/visual assistant they required two years of particular experience. That I had five years of experience in because of radio and performing. It also fit into the umbrella of my degree. I applied over a month ago to this job. I had reached out to all my contacts. And one week after becoming a horphan (I still think that’s funny)…I got an e-mail containing their regrets.
And I spun in…to a fit of rage.
I mean Hulk rage. I’m talking about table flipping rage. I’m talking about drive two hours to have a meltdown in their very nice lobby rage. And that is how this texting conversation came about with a friend of mine who has helped me with my networking and who therefore understands my desire to work for this group.
Me: So I just got a message that they filled that job.
Her: Come on and admit you might be a little happy you aren’t in the position to have to make a major decision right now?
Me: No. I need a job. I want to help mom. That was the last bit of hope.
First of all–props to her for trying to point out the positive. Fact of the matter is, I don’t need to have to worry about moving right now. And I know this is why God brought her into my life. She is a voice of reason for me. And I don’t have a lot of reasoning power right now. You know who you are! LOVE YOU!!!
But second…do you see it? Right there in my response? I wrote “That was the last bit of hope.” I sent this message at 10:19 pm Monday night. I posted my blog about hope at 10:19 am Monday morning. (Well played Jesus….well played…)
That de-escalated quickly! From the valley of peace to the bottom of the pit in just 12 simple hours. And actually in mere minutes after receiving that e-mail. I had just been talking to my mom about my blog post and talking about how much it had impacted me…only to respond this way to a job rejection a few minutes later.
And because of all of this…I owe you an apology.
I have worked hard to combat lofty thoughts about my writing. I have spoken to the fact that I am not strong…I am just experienced and collapsing fully on my trust in Jesus. Out of faith in Him but also out of sheer exhaustion and desperation. But Monday morning, I wrote on hope in an attempt to shed some light on our day. And then that night I turned the lamp off.
But God has opened my eyes to some truth today on this topic. He has used His divine and inspired word…and a book on crafting resumes to slap me in the face with words. Let’s start with the resume book.
Resume 101: A student and Recent-Grad Guide to Crafting Resumes and Cover Letters That Land Jobs is a book by Dr. Quentin J. Schultze, and despite having the longest title possibly of any book ever…it is proving to be amazing! I’m learning about lot and looking forward to crafting better resumes for this organization I’m speaking of and other jobs I pursue. He starts one paragraph of his book with this sentence: “Sending out resumes can be humiliating.” That affirmation was much needed right now. As was the affirmationin the next sentence that not getting interviews could prove that the employer is a loser (or maybe me…but I’m pretty sure it’s not me.). But here is the important part:
“Smart employers don’t look for perfect people. They look for honest, mature individuals who know their own strengths and weaknesses and are willing to continue learning…so think about all the things in your life for which you’re thankful. Then visualize one more gift–you. And your life experience.” (Pg. 10 & 13)
My loss of that job was not a loss of hope. It was a loss of…nothing actually. For me, it was a loss of a shred of self-esteem (my last), but it shouldn’t have been. It should’ve just been another bump in the road. Another no. But even as I say these words I find myself again wondering, “So when do I get my yes?” I repent of losing my head and thinking I lost my hope…but I am still in a situation of unemployment and necessity. After removing the lies from the situation…what do I do with the truth I’m left with? And that is where the next quote comes in:
“Afflicted city, storm-battered unpitied: I’m about to rebuild you with stones of turquoise, lay your foundations with sapphires, construct your towers with rubies,your gates with jewels, and all your walls with precious stones.” -Isaiah 54:11-12 (MSG)
Here is a my current self-portrait in words…
I am bruised. I am broken. I am bleeding from places I didn’t even know I had places. I am not only adapting to a world without my father…I am adapting to a world without some of my oldest family friends. Words they said during this time of sadness are…not unforgivable but unredeemable. They are not…but their words are. Through time and the grace of God they will be forgiven but that relationship will never be as it was. I have been burned by fire, crushed by waves, whipped by wind, crumbled by quakes, and busted by flying words and emotions. I am a burned out, run down castle on a high hill.
But this truth comes in and changes my walls. Suddenly I am stronger. My walls are whole, not hole. My turrets are strong, not gone. And my kitchens gleam, they’re not lean. I have been rebuilt by the master carpenter. And he didn’t just rebuild my walls, and doors, and windows, and beams, and brackets, and floors…He adorned them. He gave me the best of Himself and the best of His wealth. And His promise, here in His unbreakable word bond with me is that He will continue to do these things to the afflicted, storm-battered, and unpitied. Which is me. But not forever.
So I apologize, for speaking to you about the hope we have…and then throwing mine down on the ground like an old apple core.
And I apologize, for thanking you for the hope You’ve given us…and then abrassively attacking You for taking mine back.
And I thank You for Your forgiveness.
I thank You for transforming this burned out, run down castle on a high hill into a glory fortress as a place for me to bring You what You deserve…and a place where You present me with what I do not.
Love each other.