My dad used to recruit and place people for jobs, back when there were jobs in West Michigan to fill. He taught me a lot about the pursuit of a job, how to act in interviews (even though his advice made me come off as arrogant – thanks, Dad), and how to go about following up. One of the things he told me as a teenager, and every time I’ve sought new employment since, is that you never get the first job you apply for, so make sure you apply for a lot. It seems like a logical piece of advice, especially in today’s economy. It hasn’t turned out to be the case for me yet, but it still sounds like good advice.
Sometimes I get annoyed about my church job history, especially when I consider that I have stayed at just about every secular job as long as I’ve been at my church jobs combined. And it’s not like I’m looking to jump around, either. I have actually taken every job with the aspiration of being there a long time and really making a huge impact, but it hasn’t happened that way. But then I look at how each job came about, and I realize that it’s been all God’s doing. Did you know that I never applied for my job at Baymeadows? I just told the pastor that I’d like to be the youth pastor when they hired someone to replace Phillip, and that’s what happened. I also never applied at New Hope. I was at my wit’s end at Baymeadows, and I sent Charles an e-mail, asking him to pray for my situation as I was going to look somewhere else. Next thing you know, I’m the children’s pastor at New Hope.
Now, I did apply at Kalamazoo Community, but it was the first job I applied at. And, once I was certain that God (and I) still wanted me to be a youth and/or children’s pastor for a while, it stood alone at the top of my list of churches I’d like to work at. So if I had only applied for one job, and it was a job I really wanted, I would be in the exact same position I am now: hired by KCC. We know it was all God, too. Seriously, when I was told I had 8 weeks of pay before NH cut me off, I thought this was going to be impossible. I felt a little better when I was told it was closer to 12 weeks, but I was still a little nervous (and by a little nervous, I mean I hardly slept). But God took care of it. He already knew where He wanted us.
We are really excited about going back to Michigan. Yes, we will miss a lot of our friends in Ohio, but there’s just something about going home. I’ve wanted to go home for 5 years. And God knew that when we had a child, we wanted to raise him in Michigan (I only told Him every day, just in case), and now we will be. We’ve also prayed that when we had a child that Sarah would be able to be a stay at home mom, and now that’s feasible, too. So God is giving us many things we’ve asked for over the last 5 years all at once, even if it wasn’t exactly the timing we had in mind. God’s just that cool. And that’s why we like Him – after all, we only love Him, because He loved us first.