My job hunt continues and so does my downard spiral into self-doubt, insecurity, and confusion. I am telling you, this is a season like I have never experienced. I really don't know how to put it into words. Before I even began looking for a job, God began working on my heart. He began spotlighting issues like pride and an unhealthy need for attention and recognition. And when I say "spotlighting" what I really mean is tugging, in a rough, almost painful way that made it clear that these pet sins I kept tucked every so tightly under my arm were gonna go or I was going to learn to live with unnecessary pain, like a toothache that could be relieved by a dreaded visit to the dentist.
I decided that to deal with this issue I should just do my best to shrink away. Less of me, more of Him. He had already done such an amazing work on my heart through teaching dance and theater. I began to realize that He had slowly turned my heart from one of a performer desperate for a stage and applause into the teacher whose greatest joy came from watching her students perform. Then, I started a job search. And I had to write a resume. I had to say good things about myself because really, "I cannot keep my house clean and I enjoy spending abnormal amounts of time alone" just does not get you a job. So, I tried to make the things I've done sound as impressive as possible. With each job application I tried to twist my credentials to make them fit what the job description listed. But at the end of the day, it is what it is.
I had one interview and I felt really good about it. I surprised myself by how confident I felt. I was totally 100% me. For one time in my life I spoke exactly what came to my mind, no filter. That was a really big deal for me. It also meant that my confidence took a critical hit when I didn't get the job. Because I thought, 'I was myself and it wasn't good enough.'
To add insult to injury, a few weeks ago I was shopping when I ran into one of my theater kids and his mom. We started talking and she told me she had just gotten a new job and immediately I knew. She got my job. At first my heart dropped to the floor, but as we talked some more I found myself actually feeling happy for her. I knew that she had been commuting and this job would keep her from traveling. Which was exactly why I wanted the job, but even still I found that I could rejoice for her. I won't lie, it wasn't easy. As she rattled off places she's worked and things she's done I couldn't help but admit that she was way more qualified. It was like meeting your ex's new girlfriend and she is totally gorgeous and sweet and you don't even have the satisfaction of knowing that she snorts really loud when she laughs or has a weird skin condition. A part of me wondered why this had to be rubbed in my face, and a part of me felt relieved to meet her and know who got the job.
Well, fast forward to today and I hear about a position that is just coming open. It would be with the company one of my dance mom's works for and she told me to e-mail my resume to her. Within the hour she had not only responded to let me know she had passed along my resume, but she called to ask a couple of questions and to tell me that I needed to go take a computer test to have that part of the interviewing process done. Ugh. Anything but a computer test!!!!! Not only am I a nervous wreck about this test that I'm not completely sure of what it will entail, but brace yourself for this plot twist. The original job I applied for? It was for an employment specialist at a new workforce center here in town. Guess where I have to go to take this test? Yep, you guessed it. At the workforce center. With the new employment specialist. I actually joked with Josh when I didn't get that job that maybe they could help me find a job! And here I am, eating those words.....
I share all of this to say that there has never been a time in my life that I have felt more unqualified, more unskilled, and more unworthy. This even beats out putting on tights and teaching dance for 8 hours a day after a 10 year hiatus. Today I felt like a 9 year old who had been told they have to go play with the neighbor kid that stole their toy. I mean sure, I can still feel joy for this other person that got that job, but do I have to go hang out at the office with her? I find myself asking, 'What is the purpose?' If I wasn't supposed to get that job, why did I have to go interview in the first place? Couldn't God just close that door before I got my hopes up? Another job I thought I had the inside info on and hoped nobody else even knew about it. I found out 149 other people applied for it!!!
As I pondered these things I realized that when you pray for humility, you have to be prepared to go through some humbling experiences. You have to realize that you are the not the only person with hopes and dreams and plans on the line. You begin to understand that whatever education, skills or other qualities you possess don't necessarily make you the right fit for every position. And when you reach the point that you aren't even sure which job you would want anyway, you begin to treasure serving a God who is in the details and sees where this journey is going, however trying and painful it is to get there.
In case I began to doubt the theme of my life right now, I opened my devotional to these words tonight:
Remember that I am sovereign over your circumstances, and humble yourself under My mighty hand. Rejoice in what I am doing in your life, even though it is beyond your understanding.
~Sarah Young, "Jesus Calling"
Yes, He is sovereign. And seeing His plan come to fruition in His time, that will be the whipped cream on my humble pie.