I’ve been searching for a job for 131 days. I start my new job in 2 short days.
But it’d be remiss of me to have a blog that touts “life lessons” and not share the ones I’ve learned along the way – so here are my top 10:
Lesson 1: I found out who my friends are.
I’ve lost a few friends along the way. This didn’t come so much in the form of arguments or formal goodbyes as it did a whole lot of quietly closed doors. Subtle. But real. And it’s okay. I’ve made a lot of new friends along the way. I’ve interviewed with people I’ll stay in touch with and gotten closer to some people I have a new appreciation for. True friends stay. Find out who they are.
Lesson 2: I CAN find joy in the journey, but I must CHOOSE joy.
I had about a week’s worth of hours, in total, of time I spent upset about being in this particular season. But those moments never lasted long. Oh I had moments of ugly snotty sobbing in my pillow, but I decided to press into God, family, and friends. In so doing, I found real joy: the kind that overcomes depression. The more grateful I become, the less I worry. The less I worry, the more I walk in pure joy.
Philippians 4:6-7; Matthew 6:25-27;34
Lesson 3: I don’t need as much as I think I do.
This whole journey made me re-prioritize my budget. I need food, clothing, and shelter. I will act accordingly once my paychecks start coming in.
Lesson 4: Sometimes ordinary rocks contain diamonds. Sometimes what glitters is just plastic.
I found out who I am. And who I am has nothing to do with education or relationship status or job status. It has nothing to do with clothing size or height. I am a rare, priceless diamond. Every time I break a little, I am being chipped out of an ordinary rock. The more broken, the more of my true beauty is revealed. Bring on the hard drops. I was not born for mediocrity. I was created to dazzle.
Lesson 5: Humility is the hardest, best thing.
Sometimes no news or bad news is the best news of all. I waited through 8 weeks of interviews with one company, including an all-day, in-house, 6-back-to-back interviews-in-one-day kind of circus where I came away thinking I got the job. But I did not. And if I had gotten it, this better opportunity that I start Monday would not have come. AND, more importantly, I would not have had the benefit of the lessons only humility teaches. In humility I learn to let go, to be quiet, and to trust God. Humility is the great, heavy door that opens to the hallway of faith, hope, trust, love, joy, and peace. When you’re humbled, don’t play the blame game. Embrace it and learn from it. It’s the lesson we should never stop learning.
Lesson 6: Encourage anyway.
On New Year’s Eve last year, I had a long talk with a great friend. He asked what I wanted to have accomplished when we sit down on New Year’s Eve of this year to recap. I said I want to have made a noticable impact on the lives of just a few women this year. I believe I threw out the number 30. We committed this to prayer. I stopped counting a while ago. Over the past 131 days, the number of women I’ve reached exceeds the number of days. Not a humble brag. Facts. You’ll get what you pray for when you pray for that which is in God’s will.
Life is tough. Encourage anyway.
Lesson 7: Narrow your circle.
I have 3 good friends in my circle. 3 friends who get the bad selfies. The ugly-cry days. The mountain-top-moments. And I get theirs. They speak truth in love and they do it consistently and well. They encourage me to be my best, and I return the love.
Narrow your circle, broaden your reach.
Lesson 8: Patience is a minor form of insanity disguised as a virtue.
LOL. But seriously, practice patience or the waiting will drive you mad.
Lesson 9: Never stop learning.
In the past 6 months I’ve read the entire Bible, listened to 9 audio books (2 twice), and done 3 in-depth Bible studies. I’ve grown so much more than if I’d binge-watched Netflix. Put down the remote and pick up a book, a journal, a pen, and a highlighter. Learn to grow as you go.
Lesson 10: His will, not mine.
“You can make many plans, but the Lord ’s purpose will prevail.”
Proverbs 19:21 NLT
“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.”
Matthew 6:33 CSB