Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Barista dreams

(Puamana, HI)

Looking back over the past several years of marriage, I can't help but be amazed (and sadly- surprised!) by God's faithfulness. That's something I've been thinking about a lot lately.

Kristian and I were just recalling an interesting event from Hawaii the other night- a reminder of God's sovereignty even when we can't understand. It's just a seemingly small little thing, but really it altered the entire course of our life.

Promptly upon moving to Maui, we started searching for jobs.

We were actually offered jobs the first day after arriving on the island at the Banana Bungalow, our hostel. They said we could work there a few months and live there for free. Sounded enticing, but after experiencing the place for a couple days, we were scrambling to get out as quick as possible. (you can read more about the first days here.)

(many prayers said from this tiny room at the Bungalow!)

Next, we almost joined the crew for a cruise line (you know, like a "3 hour tour"), where we would be out on the water about twice a day.
And we felt quite flattered- they seemed to really want us for the job. We thought it was maybe because we were so congenial and good-looking. haha.
Actually, it was because we were drug-free, unlike most applicants apparently.
I got sea-sick on our first "test ride", so we figured that probably wasn't the best choice.

After turning that down, we almost took shifts at a big hotel. Again, they were really interested in us, mainly due to the lack of substances running through our veins. Actually, the manager really did like Kristian and I think he would have been promoted very quickly there. He was going to start out as a bellhop out front, and we'd hopefully see each other when he carried people's luggage in and I was there donning a lei at the concierge desk. Sounded pretty fun.
But then we realized we'd probably have conflicting schedules- me working days, and K working nights. That kind of ruined the whole point of our Hawaiian adventure, so we nixed that offer.

Then I found the place of my dream job... a quaint little island coffee shop. I've always thought it would be fun to work as a barista at some point, and this was my chance. We loved the place. We didn't have internet at the apartment so we sat here about once or twice a week to catch up on emails and such. And, I love coffee!! This was perfect.

So I applied and interviewed, and waited for the owner's call. And waited, and waited some more.
Finally she called- I didn't get the job.
Sad. I know I'm not perfect but, hey, I'm drug free! But I guess that wasn't the only credential there.
I was bummed.

I remember Kristian saying then he was surprised I hadn't gotten the job, and that it was actually kind of bizarre. There were definitely not a plethora of applicants, and, to my sweet husband at least, I seemed capable enough!

We had job offers from the golf resort, and they were just waiting to hear back from us. I had tried to put it off in hopes coffee shop lady would hire me, but when we heard it was a no-go, we took the offers, and there we worked for our entire Hawaii life.

Kristian loved it. I did not. (Looking back, no doubt I should have had a better attitude and been thankful for the provision God had given, but I really did dislike it.)

So, most know the story of how we came to be in NYC. Through the job at the resort we ended up meeting a high profile sports figure, who (long story short) offered a job in the City!

After living here almost three years, we feel God has really changed our hearts in so many ways, and really redirectioned our goals as a couple, and as his servants. We know He brought us here on purpose.

And we now are able to look back on all of that job searching in HI and see God's sovereignty. Even in something so small as not allowing me to get the job at the coffee shop, he was working, and knew what He was doing!

That is such a simple example, but oh, such a good reminder of His mighty hands working even in the midst of something that we really couldn't understand. (I am in no way comparing this to "suffering" many are experiencing right now where it is difficult to understand the purpose in it all. It was not suffering, but thankfully the same truth still applies.)

I've been reading this passage in Isaiah 40 over and over again this week. Here is a little part of it.
It's speaking to Israel, but the God it speaks of is the same God we serve today, so we know this is just as true now:

Why do you say, "My way is hidden from the LORD; my cause is disregarded by my God"? (Why didn't I get the job?... Why have I lost my job?... Why don't I have a husband? a boyfriend?... Why am I unhappy in marriage?... Why is there so much pain?...Why am I ill?...Has God forgotten about me?)

Do you not know? Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.

He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.
(ESV- his understanding is unsearchable!)How very, very often I need to be reminded that His ways are higher than my ways, and His thoughts higher than mine.

(Napili beach)

What a comfort! Who knows where I'd be without Him steadily and gently leading me.
Probably back at the Banana Bungalow!