Wednesday, April 10, 2013

In Which I Have a New Job

The past six weeks of unemployment have challenged me in ways unending.

Just two weeks ago, in fact, I began packing up my life here in Arkansas to head northbound to St. Louis where I was offered a place to stay with my best friend and her new twin boys (and the Mr. of course). St. Louis made a lot of sense as I will graduate in June and just need a filler job until then, at which point I can attain the "dream job" whatever the heck that means! 

Plus, I was relieved to have a back up plan after the 30+ jobs I'd applied for ignored my emails and calls. I didn't see then what God was requiring. And I can see now how miserably I failed that test. How often I forget He is trustworthy and fully in control [especially when I'm not, amen?]

Yesterday I started my new job as "nanny" and then some to three boys. 

Just two days before I was to depart for St. Louis, I was offered an interview for a nanny position in Arkansas. I interviewed the following night and was offered the job the day after. In the meantime, I still kept my plans to go to St. Louis and interview there as well, though I knew on the drive up it would be a short trip as I was pulling away from my "home" in the rolling hills (that I once called mountains) of the natural state.

See that was much of the wrestling and not trusting--this place has become my home these past three years and I couldn't imagine calling it quits quite yet. [Despite desperately missing my family in St. Louis.]

God used the trip to confirm the door He'd opened back South was indeed the one I should walk on through. So barely a day into my trip, I accepted the position. The reactions of those close to me were a little bitter mixed with a lot a sweet, as most I trust knew it was the answered prayer we'd been believing for.

Tonight, as I sit here physically, emotionally, and spiritually drained, covered in spit up and various combinations of peas and carrots with a couple layers of paint, chalk, and dog hair to top it off---well let's just say I can't do much but laugh at the reality that this is what many prayers answered looks like in all it's glory. I am reminded God's "working all things together for our good" takes on odd shapes and sizes at times, yet He is working indeed.

As much as I need a shower right now, I am equally confident of His provision of this position for my good. 

I always thought these concepts of God "equipping us for the calling" and "training us in death to self" were ones I would wrestle through prior to moving across the world for the sake of the gospel. Instead I'm seeing it as I re-define the word "time-out" for boys quite fluent in disobedience [and absolute melt downs]. In the way eating my lunch around three this afternoon was a victory celebrated. I'm seeing it in the way my "Tot School" qualifications can be found on my Pinterst wall. How I yelled when my perfectly clean kitchen took a thick layer of red play-dough to the rug this afternoon [and fought to hold back the tears while I scrubbed]. And I see it in the way that the lady at the bookstore today asked me if they were twins and bent down to help as I juggled the baby and his buggy of gear too. She smiled and told me they were precious--and I gritted my teeth and replied yes ma'am, they are.

And you know what? They really are. It's a part of the dying that God is teaching me at the close of this day two. A little spit up and few melt downs doesn't change that. Nor does the suffering I feel when six o' clock feels centuries away. Neither does the fact that they are just my job. They are gifts from the Lord and for this season of time, they are my gifts for these fifty hours of the week. God has entrusted me with them--so have their unbelieving parents. And He commands me to be faithful.

Yesterday I connected with the mom of these boys over her previous hurts from the Catholic church. She explained to me she is excited for the twins to be in school in the fall--school in a church because they need something spiritual, even she can't give it to them. And God reminds me--Courtney, I have chosen this family to employ you for reasons far exceeding your need for a check at the end of the week. This morning I met another mom at story time and she just moved here from India. What a blessing my time with her was. Another reminder the Word is living and active here too.

Today, God didn't need me preaching in India. He needed me at Barnes and Noble for story time in Rogers, Arkansas with two boys attached to my legs and another slobbering in my arms. He needed me to sit cross-legged on the floor of this bookstore feeding the baby a bottle beside a mom from India while the boys shared a bench up front.

I wasn't ever quite convinced changing diapers and teaching the alphabet was a worthy calling until they were my own one day. Today, God ever so gently reminded me that taking up my cross to follow Him is the only worthy calling. 

So tomorrow, picking up my cross is asking these boys to forgive me for yelling over spilled play-dough. It's singing of Christ's love while I change the baby's diaper. It's speaking life over these boys when even their parents tell me they're a handful. It's disciplining when they don't obey the first time, even if letting it go would prevent a melt down. It's praying for patience and joy and India while I wash dishes and fold laundry. It's remembering just how unworthy I am, how selfish, and repenting.

Picking up my cross is resting in His grace all-sufficent when they all three have pressing needs and there is just one exhausted me. It's the deep breath and the peace that transcends it all. It's the fact that He died so I could live. So these boys could live--and one day know the peace too.

And then I realize just how worthy this calling is--and how it being  entrusted to me is grace alone. 


  1. AMEN SISTER!!!! I couldn't agree more:)!!!! I so pictured myself in some of the exact places u have found yourself with 3 little ones:)! Court, I so love your honesty & humblness before the Lord! He does have an amazing plan for u...& it starts right now, right where u are!!! I love u & keep disciplining:)!!

  2. Stumbled on your blog looking for 'kitchen table church.' We have a bio daughter and 2 adopted children (1 boy, one girl). The trauma they experienced will probably never fully heal unless God reaches into their brains and rewires them. This post speaks to me. It is hard each day dealing with the same issues over and over. And realizing that some of those same issues are mine.

    Thank you for the reminder that it is not only my calling but also the way I can take up the cross daily.

    Your insight far surpasses one just graduating. Thanks for sharing your life.

    1. Jon, thanks for your encouragement! You know, He really is the only one who can rewire brains and restore hope!! He is faithful!! Praying for you and your kiddos. Hang in there and seek Him!!