Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Pauper to princess

Last week in the midst of all the turmoil over the job, I found myself experiencing a wide range of emotions…despair, excitement, dread, anticipation, fear. Ah…that was it. When I got right down to it, I was afraid. I was afraid that if I went back to work something would happen like when I went back to work before Bennett was diagnosed with a brain tumor. I was also afraid of what might happen to my relationship with Jude. Would he suddenly discover he didn’t need to be a mommy’s boy anymore?

I was also frustrated. It seemed like all our dreams were being thrown out the window. Because I have trouble stopping at what happens when I take a job for 7 weeks. I end up skipping years ahead and thinking, “Okay, great, now I’ll be working full-time there is no way that I can homeschool Jude.” But being able to pay off our debt and having enough money to pay our bills sounded so good to me too; at least having less stress about these things. I ended up having to surrender it all to God. There was no easy answer.

Then I received a Bible Study the day before my job interview. When I clicked on the link and at the top of the page appeared the picture I have at the top of this page. I was instantly drawn to it because that was exactly how I felt. There I was clinging to the earth when Jesus was reaching out to me with a crown of jewels.

The Bible study was about chapter 41 in Genesis. This is a story about Joseph interpreting the Pharaoh’s dream that there would be 7 years of plenty followed by 7 years of famine. Joseph is put in charge of all of Egypt, and he stores up huge amounts of grain that he sold when the famine came.

After I read the chapter, I asked God what I was supposed to take from it. Clearly, I was shown that this job was a way of providing for our family now…it was God’s provision to prepare for a time when the resources will be needed.

I emailed Brenda Hendricks, the person who sent the Bible Study, to find out more about the picture. I told her that the woman in the picture was me. She told me that the ashes falling from the woman’s hand spell the word “Pauper”. And that the jewels in the crown spell the word “Princess”. On the cross were the words “Jesus Saves.”

She told me that as she worked on the illustration she had these thoughts… “discard the ashes of your past pauper-existence for now you are the Bride of Christ.” By clinging to the earthly things and ways as I do, I have become such a pauper. Not just in a financial sense, but in a spiritual sense. There are heavenly riches that I cannot even fathom if I can trust and have faith in Christ.

And so I did. I took that leap of faith again. I went to the interview with the thought that it didn’t matter one way or the other to me personally whether I got the job. If I got it there was some reason for me to be there. If I didn’t, God needed me somewhere else.

I’ll have to say, even though I hadn’t interviewed for a job in 10 years, that was the easiest job interview I ever had. I basically had a conversation with the four people who were interviewing me (the principal, assistant principal, and two teachers). After a while, the principal said, we had a bunch of questions we were going to ask you, but I have a good feeling about this. I don’t think we need to ask any questions. He called before I got home to offer me the job. I asked if I could let him know tomorrow because I wanted time to pray about it.

I start in April probably 3 years to date that I left my classroom when Jude was born.

"You turned my mourning into dancing
You stripped me of my sorrow and clothed me with your joy
I cannot be silent, I will sing Your praises forever." ~Psalms 30:11&12 (paraphrased by Brenda Hendricks)
The illustration was used with permission from Brenda Hendricks

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