Anytime I see or say a timeframe in years I immediately think of the song, “Gold Digger” by Kanye West. Anyone else? It’s been a while since I’ve updated on my site due to various other writing commitments and for that, I have no excuse other than I struggle with schedule management. If anyone knows of someone who wants to be a solid personal assistant in exchange for hugs and sequins, send them my way.
Today marks 4 years at my current employer. I don’t put the name of them because I sometimes share hilarious quotes and stories and would never want to put anything or anyone at risk. I’ve shared before that this job was an answer to prayer. When I say that, I don’t want to be one of those “basic girls” that tries to bathe every hobby she has in the Holy Spirit because it’s the “southern” thing to do. I say it because it’s true. I had been in my last job for a little over a year and with the company for a little over 3. It was a great job where I made some marvelous friends and learned a lot about insurance, business, people, and life in general. After various departmental changes, many of us were quite miserable and were longing for change or a way out. God is so good. I had interviewed for another position within Cigna and that very day I was informed of a job opening externally and gave it a shot. I don’t like having too many options and asked God to make it clear in the waiting. The department I was in wouldn’t allow me to be released for another job for months and the other job was better benefits as well as a pay increase. So I applied!
I had gone out of town with a group of girlfriends and the current job wasn’t going to allow me to be off that Monday following the weekend trip and while some encouraged me to call in sick, I just couldn’t bring myself to. Shana, a dear friend, said to me, “Jenny Belle, God is going to bless that obedience.” We even read in Psalm 128:1 that, “Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him.” Y’all, He blessed me indeed. That Monday I was working from home and got a call for a phone interview. The rest is history and 4 years later I’m working at a job that I love. Some days are challenging and frustrating but that’s life. There was a time I tried to leave the country for missions and God shut that door. After a few tantrums and some grieving, He showed me that this is my mission field. If I was willing to go, was I willing to stay? He uses us no matter where we are. Bloom where you are planted. Trust that He’s for you and that His plans are better. My boss has even told me before that this is where I’m supposed to be. Maybe I followed that with, “mind your business.” Whatever. She knows I love her and I’m thankful to be here. This job really was an answer to prayer and has been so good for me on many levels.
It’s become a weekly occurrence for opportunities to arise for me to pray with employees and I love that! My bosses are aware and know that I ask permission while giving people the option to decline the prayer. I’ve jokingly told people that it’ll be the praying that gets me fired. Yesterday, I met with a gentleman about retirement and often times I express to those inquiring about it that there’s a lot that goes into retiring as far as emotions go. People get used to working for so long that they don’t know what life is like when they stop. They’ve found so much of their worth in what they do that when it stops, they don’t know how to function and that brings on depression. Retirement should be enjoyed! A lot of times I am honored to pray for employees as they’re uneasy regarding the unknown. They want to see what’s out there but they are terrified. I get that. Yesterday there was a gentleman in my office and we were discussing it all and I asked if I could pray for him before he left. He got teary eyed and said he would love that and that he’s never seen anyone do that here. I expressed that I firmly believe that’s part of why God has me working here. As I prayed, there was laughter and also some tears but after I said, “Amen” he immediately started praying for me. No one has done that here after a prayer. I’ve not expected anyone to because that’s not why I do it but he blessed me more than he realizes. I was floored and in tears by the words and am thankful for his obedience in that.
All that to say, God uses us where we are. Where we are is a mission field whether it feels like it or not. On the days you want to put someone’s head through a wall or just curl up and take a nap from exhaustion after questions that have been answered countless times in verbal and written form. It’s not always easy and a lot of times I get it wrong. Please know I don’t share any of the above to boast in my ability because I’m one flawed woman. I share it to encourage in hopes that you know God loves you and wants to use you to love on others and encourage them. Sometimes people need to be reminded that they matter or hugged.
Galatians 6:9 says, “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” I’ve said it before and I’ll say it til I die, nothing is wasted so as you’re holding on for what’s next in life, embrace where you are and know it’s being used to refine and prepare you for what God is working on and already doing. He’s good and we can trust Him.