August 15, 2010

Solutions -- at hand

I just got back in from church (well, a bit ago), and had some lunch. I am now sitting down to blog a bit, and then might venture out in the heat to look for some new sandals/flip flops for work. Our church was awesome today, very Spirit-filled, and offered an "in your face" message on Pornography. Our Pastoral staff is teaching a 3-part message called "Porn, Money and Sex." These are hard driven messages standing on the Biblical foundation of God's Word and address the key issues facing our culture and generation. Today's message was powerful and moving.

It was during the service when I felt the Holy Spirit's indwelling peace in my heart. I was standing there, singing and praising the Lord, and it was like "Peace" just fell all about me. I started crying, just weeping really, as I sang the words of the worship song. My heart just sank and the lifted up and I knew exactly what God had planned for me. In the past, I would often receive a "word" from the Lord, sort of a testimony about a question I had or some advice I needed. In fact, the Lord has guided me into many things recently: graduate school (the right school/right program); cello study; foreign language; and now job search. Some of these things just clicked right off. It was as if I knew instantly that I was in the right place at the right time, kwim?

I have blogged about my tough job search, and my desire to work for a while now. I also have shared the ups and downs of working for Macy's. I was so frustrated last night, feeling that I was in the wrong place; but also thinking I was stuck there for a time. I knew I didn't want to continue on, but also didn't want to just leave them high and dry. The Lord kept telling me to stick it out for "a time," which generally means "[Lord speaking] hang in there until I make something happen." So there I was sitting at home, feeling awful, and trying to figure out what to do. Then after a fitful night's sleep, I got up and did something -- something that I am thinking "might" just be His will???

You see, I am employed at Macy's now. It is not a good fit, but it is work. I am thanking God for His provision. I have applied at other retail outlets, but they haven't bitten on my application. Last night, I happened by the Apple Computer website, and clicked on their Job's link. My nephew works for the Apple Store in CA (and makes good money), so I took a passing glance at whether there were any jobs here in Phoenix. Yes, there were -- several in fact. And, our local Apple store was hiring Experts (which is really just a retail person). I wasn't too interested in this job because it pretty much is what I already do at Macy's -- but I did notice some other higher level positions that I am definitely qualified for and could see myself doing.

I clicked away last night, but came back the site this morning. I applied for the position of Mac Expert at our local store, and then also applied as a Retail Consultant through their Corporate division. I should mention that I worked at Apple years ago -- as an Area Assistant in Product Development/Marketing Tools. I liked it then, but I wasn't interested in full time work -- I wanted to teach college and that was my goal at the time. Zoom forward some 20 years and here I am applying at Apple. My good friend works for Apple Corporate and has done so for 17 years. She is well-set, well set, and has done very well for herself. I am behind the 8-ball, so to speak, but I am also working to another's plan (God's and not my own).

Come back to church -- and there I was singing, lifting my hands in praise, and feeling like "this is it." I mean, this path, this way, this job is IT. I just felt like all the job searching, all the job hunting, job devising, and job let downs may have been in place simply to get me to this point in time. I don't know if Apple would have hired me without some retail experience. I have that now, I am working at present. Perhaps it was necessary for me to be employeed BEFORE they would even take a look at me? I don't know, but I am hopeful that they will consider my application and resume and say "Hmm...we need to meet with her today!" Praise the Lord, if it can be so? Yes, I think it can!

Moreover, I am firmly convinced now that we are to relocate to Chicago. I have known this for almost a year now, and was willing to go there whenever the Lord opened the door for me. I just didn't know how we would get there, and then how I would live there (it is expensive). The Lord has been pointing me to Chicago, redirecting me to there -- and every single time I get off point -- He brings me back around to this place. It is like: "Carol, there is no other place for you. This is where you are to go." Yes, Lord -- I will go.

I have sought various ways to get myself to Chicago, and the Lord has pointed me to several companies that would move me there. Follett Corporation is based in River Grove (NW of Chicago), and I tried to get past their HR screening for about five months. Nothing worked -- even trying to get hired here first, and then looking to a transfer later on. I tried Kohl's, Target, Best Buy and Macy's. Macy's was the only place that hired me, but after getting in the door, I realized that unless I wanted to work in San Francisco -- getting to Macy's in Chicago was not going to be easy. Apple also has offices in Chicago, and they have retail stores everywhere. Will Apple be the one to let me bite into them (no pun intended)? Perhaps they will -- I will have to wait and see.

The long and short of it is this: I am now firmly convinced that the way out is not back through the old doorway. The way out is to walk on with the Lord, following after Him as He leads me through this wilderness and into His Promiseland. That Promiseland happens to be near Chicago, and since He is leading me -- it is up to Him to provide a way for me to go there, and then live there. Is Apple His choice? Perhaps it is. If not, then He will lead me to another venue, and we will wait together. We will wait to see His Hand move and His hand deliver me from my present situation.

Selah! God is Good to Me.

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