I have a new job. And it's my dream job - I think? I think I'm too young to have my dream job.
Maybe, probably, I will have new dreams in two or five or ten years, and that's fine, but for now, it is, in fact, my dream job.
I'm so thankful. And at the same time, my thankfulness over the last few months has been laced with discontentment. I keep asking God if I can move back to Kansas City. I want to pick up my little sister for lunch dates and be a respite caregiver for the Peery House and play on the playground with UCA's inaugural kindergarten class and go to my dad's shows and plan a Camp CUMCITO Teen Girls retreat and let my friend Kyla chauffeur me around with her shiny new driver's license and become friends with the man who's dating my best friend. There are so many good things going on there that I would love to be a part of, and so many people who I want to live daily life with.
And I feel like God doesn't get it, because I keep hearing "Not yet." I forget my dream job and the dearly loved family I nanny for and the healthiest church that I've ever been a part of and the community that has truly become my West Seattle family and the sunset over the mountains over the ocean and I start daydreaming and wishing and whining to God, and then I get angry, because he's not letting me live every good story that I want to live all at the same time.
He's been so patient with me. He has not yet raised his voice with me. But he has said in loving firmness, "Do you really think that your story is better than mine? Do you really think that it is all about you getting everything you want (which is too much for you to cram into your mouth anyway)? Infinitely greater and more beautiful things are at stake."
This morning I was reading an excerpt from the writings of Saint John of the Cross, and the editor of the book advised an assignment: "Be patient with God this week. John of the Cross consistently counsels us not to fuss or fret and take our spiritual lives into our own hands, but simply to receive what God would have us receive, no more, no less. Learn the discipline of gratitude for the small things." The Holy Spirit whispered to me, "Even though you think you're missing out on so many things in Kansas City, stop fussing and fretting. Trust your God's guidance. Trust that he knows what he's doing. He has opened doors for you here and now that you should not walk away from because you are greedy or discontent, but should keep walking through because they are good and because you are his. You are not your own. You have been bought with a price. It is not about your desires, but about his glory. He is writing a better story. And in the end, you will not regret following him instead of following your own wisdom."
I don't know how to communicate that to all of the people who I feel like I'm disappointing by my decision to stay here, but maybe they'll read this post.
There are deeply wounded and out-of-place men and women here who I get to intentionally and practically love full-time through smiles and individually tailored English worksheets and caring about them as human beings and being excited that they're here and crying out in prayer over the waves of difficulty that threaten to crash down over them. There is a thirteen year old boy who is asking big questions about who Jesus is and listening to my answers. There is a church who is pouring itself out to make God look as good as he is in the avenues and alleyways of Seattle. These are the doors that I'm going to follow God through. God, help me not just walk, but run.
I haven't seen it yet and can't recommend it or not, but the issues it raises are huge and close to my heart - immigration reform is needed terribly, and the church needs to lead in welcoming the stranger as we have been so radically welcomed by God.