August 19, 2016

Fabulous Friday!

It is a fabulous Friday here in sunny and humid Phoenix. Yes, the skies are clear, but the dew point and humidity are high today. It feels rather sticky outside. There is a slight chance for storms later tonight, but mostly it looks like it is going to be clear with no real rain for the foreseeable future. Still, God is good. He has provided an abundance of rain in our area this summer (even if where I live saw little of it). In all, this summer has passed by quickly, and God be praised, it is almost over (and I made it! Woohoo, I made it!)

This morning started with a shot gun, metaphorically speaking. I forgot that I had a mandatory adjunct meeting at Arizona Christian, so I was busily occupying myself with Facebook, Twitter and my blog, when the reminder popped up to tell me that I had less than 30 minutes to get over to campus. Luckily, I made it with time to spare. My short do is a God-send right now. I was able to get in the shower, dressed, and out the door without too much fuss. God is good, so very good to me.

Praise Him, Praise Him!

As I was driving over to ACU, I was praying over my day. I am thankful that He has provided good work for me to do. I am actually looking forward to this year. Yes, I can say it now. I am really looking forward to this school year. My attitude has shifted recently, partly I think due to the fact that my schedule and my classes were up ended earlier in the month when I noticed that my courses at Regent were listed as "closed" rather than opened. I panicked, truly I did. I felt so let down, so disappointed, and after a bit of a "pity party," started to worry about how I would make ends meet. Then the Lord pressed on me, reminding me of who He is and of the fact that He does indeed have me well-covered. It took time, of course, really some time before I was ready to let go and let Him provide for me. It was like as soon as I let go, dropped the matter, and accepted what He was providing that my life seemed to get a fresh breeze, a new wind, and well, things started to fall into place.

First of all, I received word that my financial aid refund would be more than I had previously thought. This brought relief, a HUGE SIGH OF RELIEF to me. I knew then that I would be okay. I mean, I've made it through before with just four classes. Why did I think I had to have five or six classes to be settled? Over the past week or so, as I prepped for my first week at ACU, I felt this sense of peace come over me. I started to relax, and as Monday drew closer, I felt His presence as I planned for my first day of school.

This week has just zoomed by, and here it is Friday. I have had a great week so far, and last night, while I was over at GCU for a mandatory faculty meeting, I realized just how blessed I am to be right where the Lord has me. I mean, I get to teach at these great schools. I am almost finished with my PhD, praise be to God, and I am getting ready to move (like relocate) in the near term. I feel confident that the plans the Lord has for me are solid, rock solid, and they are good, so very good. Right now, I feel GREAT. I feel like everything is coming to pass just as He promised me.

It is funny, really, how things work out. I mean, last night, I met the lady who was hired at GCU for the full-time faculty position. I had applied for this position on the encouragement of one of my peer's there, but I never received any interest. No calls to interview, no movement at all. The person they hired has her PhD, so she was more "qualified" than I was in that regard. I don't know how long she was an adjunct at GCU, but the dean made a big deal of it saying that they only hire from within. He encouraged all the adjuncts to think about full-time down the road, and while I appreciate his sentiment, all I could think of was "why not me?"

It wasn't until I was driving home that I prayed about my attitude regarding GCU. I had a soured taste in my mouth since last semester, and I have tried hard to let my hurt feelings go. Last night as I was driving home, I prayed about it. I asked the Lord to help me let this go, to accept that GCU is not His choice for me full-time, and to not hold anyone there at fault. I extended them grace, really grace, and I let it go.

This morning, what with all the rush-rush to get over to ACU, reminded me just how blessed I am to have the work that He has provided to me. I realized in a very short amount of time that I am best suited to schools where I can openly preach the Word of God. Furthermore, I am now at a place in my life where my entire approach is ministry-oriented. GCU says they are ministry-oriented, but they are not. For example, last night, no one opened us in prayer. This bothered me. I wondered if it was because the faculty there might not all be Christian. I am not sure, but I thought it was an oversight. Contrasted with my experience this morning, and well, it was night and day. Our dean at ACU prayed over us before and after the session. He also stressed ministry throughout his teaching today. I came away with a greater appreciation for what ACU is doing. Sure they are not Division I, but they are God-honoring in academics and in the way they teach and preach the Word of God. I don't know, I guess I just realized that God has hand-picked the schools where He wants me to teach, and He has decided that while GCU is a good school, it is not the place where He intends to plant me permanently.

Take Regent, for example. I love my school, and I am excited beyond measure to teach there. I have to admit that when I found out my courses were cancelled, I was a bit bummed about it. But, then I realized that perhaps God had in mind for me to focus on my dissertation so putting off extra classes might be a blessing in disguise. Still, I had this sense of feeling that I was meant to teach there, and almost daily, I have prayed over my contracts and the Lord's will for my life.

So today, after I got home from school and started to make my lunch, I was really surprised to have received a call from my chair asking me to call him back regarding my contracts. I figured he was just calling to let me know for sure that they had closed. I was prepared for that news, and I really was okay with it, I mean. So I called him back, and in less than 10 minutes on the phone, I went from having two contracts to zero contracts to one for-sure contract, and possibly two again! Wham! God moved. He moved in my favor, and after thinking I was going to have to wait a semester to be in class there, He simply opened a door for me (again). More so, in my short call, I was given great encouragement that Regent wants me and that they are excited to have me teach for them. I was blown away by the generous and amazing approach they have, and I felt so warmly appreciated for my efforts. This is not to say that I don't feel that same way at GCU, I mean, I know they do appreciate me. They tell me as such. However, I would just say it is very different -- the atmosphere, the attitude, and the genuine heartfelt and sincere appreciation is just different.

Needless to say, I am excited beyond measure today. Not only has the Lord provided teaching opportunities for me (at least one class -- a literature class!), but He has seen to my financial needs with extra abundant blessing. He has faithfully provided for me, and I am reeling from the realization that He has made a way where there seemed to be no way (as the Don Moen song goes). Yes, He made it possible, and with God, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE (Luke 1:37). This means that as of today,  I have five classes for fall. I may end up with six, but we will see by Monday. I am okay with five, frankly. It is good. It is more than I could have imagined. I am trusting Him to provide for me, and I am letting all the worry, the fear, and the stress go. He is good, so very good to me.

In Closing

As I close out this blog post, I am giving Him all the praise, the honor, and the glory. He has made all this possible, and without His help, I would be nowhere, nowhere at all. He has opened doors that can't be closed, and shut doors so that they cannot be reopened. I am safe in His marvelous will and His marvelous hand. I praise Him, I thank Him, and I adore Him this good, good day!

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