(This God story is from 2011. Things have changed since then, but more on that later!)
“You were the unanimous choice of the hiring committee, so if you and the president can agree on a salary and a start date, the position will be yours.”
Had I really just heard that right?
The assistant to the president at the college where I now teach was telling me the news I had been hoping and praying for for weeks now.
And, I knew, it’s a God thing.
This new beginning started back in early summer when just by happenstance I picked up a Sunday paper. Glancing through the classified section I saw the ad for the English faculty position at SWGTC. After showing it to my husband, David, and discussing and dreaming about the possibility with him, I set the paper aside and went about my day.
But, I couldn’t let it go.
I wanted to, but something (God) kept pulling me back, and, on the last day of the application period, I filled out an online application, got three friends and colleagues to write me letters of recommendation and sent the packet on its merry little electronic way. “There.” I told myself. At least I took the step. That’s all I can do.
I didn’t share the application news with anyone except Dave and the three friends who wrote the letters and I was glad.
After almost a month I still hadn’t heard anything from the college.
I was thinking, “Well, this is what God wanted. He just wanted to know I was willing to step out even if nothing came of it.”
But, being ever like the man after God’s own heart, David, and having a need for confirmation, I emailed the human resources person just, I thought, to be told that they had hired someone else. That’s not what happened, though. Her response was that they would begin interviews the following week and I should hear from the Hiring Committee if they were interested. Good enough. I had my answer. I said a prayer of thanks to God and let it go.
That’s not the end of the story, though. If it were, it would be good and God would still be great. However, the following week, while talking to my sister-in-law and friend Kimberly on my cell phone, my home phone rang and it was the Dean from the college wanting to set up an interview! I could hardly believe it. Just when I thought God had said NO! the door opened a little crack again.
I went to that interview the following week and when I left, I knew that I had done all I could and that there was nothing I wished that I had done any differently. I had been confident that I was the right person for the job and I left confident that whatever happened, God was in control. The committee had said that I should hear something within a week, so that meant that I wouldn’t have long to think about it or to worry over it, my usual mode of operation. This time, though, I felt a sense of peace because I knew I had given the whole situation to God and that He had this.
When two weeks went by and I hadn’t heard anything, I have to admit to panicking just a little. So, I once again put on my David persona and sent an email to the human resources person to see if a decision had been made. As I was reading her reply the following Monday morning, my cell phone rang and it was a number I didn’t recognize.
You guessed it! It was the call from the president’s office setting up my interview with him.
Some people would say that’s not about God. It’s just you were the right person. But I know differently. And, so did my sweet sister-in-law, who I often say has a direct line to God. Because when I texted her after the interview and said if God speaks to you about this, please share. She did. Here is her reply:
“The door is open. He is waiting for you on the other side to meet Him there…trust Him. Don’t listen to Satan’s lies. He will try to sway you in your discernment. I don’t know the logistics, but He does. There are a lot of mixed up college kids waiting for you to love them.”
That’s a God thing. I knew when I read this text message that taking the position was the right thing to do and that God was all over it. I just had to get out of the way and let Him be the one to shine. As He says in Jeremiah 29:11-14:
“I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out–plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I’ll listen.When you come looking for me, you’ll find me. Yes, when you get serious about finding me and want it more than anything else, I’ll make sure you won’t be disappointed. I’ll turn things around for you…You can count on it.” (The Message)