Yes, the old saying is actually “Bloom Where you are Planted,” but sometimes we are uprooted from our comfort zones or where we think God has placed us. When it happens, it can be challenging or even a little daunting, especially if we have become comfortable using our gifts and talents in a certain way. I have come to realize those might just be times God wants something better for me!
I was very comfortable, enjoying very fulfilling work as the Director of Coaching and Assessment Services for a small start-up college. I have always had a passion for working with collegians, and having the opportunity to work with a number of them in helping them discover and grow their leadership skills was a joy! So…when the 2008 downturn in the economy happened, ultimately resulting in the closure of the college in 2010, I was uncomfortably uprooted.
One of the things I always challenged my students to think about when discovering and writing their personal mission statement was to keep it open enough that it would remain true even if life circumstances changed. Now, I was faced with putting that into practice! And, in an economic downturn where there weren’t a lot of jobs.
On a walk one morning, my friend and neighbor mentioned there was a job posting on the pillar at Faith Lutheran Church for Office Team Leader. When I read the job description, I knew I could do the work, but I wasn’t sure it would be the best fit. I went ahead and interviewed and, of course, many who are reading this, know that I accepted the position and just celebrated my 7 year work anniversary.
When I first started my job, I kept asking the Lord if he was sure this was going to be a place for me to use my gifts, skills and talents for his glory. I loved the people, but did this Baptist pastor’s daughter really “fit?” And, once “transplanted,” could I learn more and grow and…thrive…in fulfilling work?
If you read my story on our website, you can learn a little more about me. I realize now, that God allowed me to be uprooted from my comfort zone for new ways to engage with people and grow me as I have learned his ways are better than my ways! “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take” – Proverbs 3:5-6. – Judi Brandow, Communications Specialist