With Courage

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I wouldn’t say I’m a particularly courageous person. Never have been.

I spent most of my childhood afraid that ALF lived in the hole in the panelling of my closet. Once my sister and I watched an episode of Urban Legends where a woman died from wearing a dress she purchased from Goodwill, and I was terrified of used clothing for a good stretch of time. During a vacation to Disney World, I refused to ride the Pirates of the Caribbean ride because I had been informed by a kid at school that the boat falls off a 100 foot cliff.

(In my defense on that last one, the movie was a few years out from being made, otherwise, I would have been all over that thing.)

But you get the picture! I was a jumpy kid! I’m just as jumpy an adult, but I’m better at compensating for all my neuroses.

Risk has never been the name of the game for me, but I’ve learned as I begin to wade into this adult thing that it is necessary. Necessary and even healthy.

So when a dear friend alerted me to the fact that my dream job at my dream employer had opened up, I knew I had to make myself apply.

I was well aware that it was a long shot, that I was completely under-qualified, and that I was very much in love with the team of people I got to work with and the purpose we were working toward. But I hadn’t risked in a while.

And…

I didn’t get the job. Didn’t even get an interview. I’m pretty sure the software the HR department used to help prioritize applications took one look at my resume and said, “Well isn’t that precious!” and took me out of the running.

But this opened up a conversation with the company I’ve contracted with as a social media marketer over the last few years.

A month ago I was not looking for a job.

I love my job. For the past two and half years, I have worked at Calvin College. I’ve been a project manager and admissions liaison in their communications and marketing department and it has been a rich experience.

During my time there, the college underwent a rebranding process. Out of that process came the concept that Calvin exists to cultivate courageous wonder. And yeah, I get it if this hits you as irrelevant. It is—at least in the context of the college.

See, I quit my job.

And this scares me.

But I walk away from my job at Calvin equipped with courage and wonder. Courage that what is ahead is where I need to be. Wonder at this beautiful calling God has placed on my life and at the rich and dynamic relationships he has allowed me to build during my time at the college. I am so grateful for every moment.

Throughout scripture, God often asks two things of his people: to not be afraid and to be obedient. These are not easy tasks and they are not things he takes lightly.

But what do we know of those he asked to leave comfort and trust what he had next? Abraham left behind all he had built to go to a land God hadn’t yet reviled to him. Moses decided to go to Egypt despite his fear of public speaking. Esther went to plea before the king, risking her position and even life. Joseph spoke honestly to pharaoh despite having it all go wrong so many times before.

Scripture is full of men and women who gave up the known for the unknown because they were asked to turn from fear and to trust.

Yes, this risk scares me, but I know that God is asking me to step out of the boat and go for a walk.

So what’s next?

I have accepted a full-time position with Apricot Services—a digital marketing firm specializing in tribe gathering and mobilizing for publishers, small business, and non-profits. I have always dreamed of working in publishing and this opportunity puts me directly in contact with multiple publishing houses and their marketing departments.

I am excited to partner with authors and help bring their messages to the people who need to hear them.

This is so where my heart is and I am grateful God has opened doors in this way, even though it has happened rather quickly.

So I step out in courage and with gratitude. That’s all I can do.—trust and see.

I don’t quite know what happens from here, but I trust it will be what is needed and that the result with leave me in wonder.

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