Streams in the Desert

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Most days I wonder why I’m still here.

Not why I’m still alive (that escalated quickly, ha) but why I’m still at this job. It’s no secret that I don’t love my workplace, but even when things are especially frustrating, I know there is purpose to this season of life. Otherwise God wouldn’t still have me here.

Today I got a reminder of God’s goodness to provide streams in the desert.

Last summer, I mentored one of our company’s interns, and at the end of the summer, she was awarded a full time job. Now we meet about once a week to grab coffee and catch up.  She’s a sweet girl from China, and I really enjoy the authenticity of our conversations.

I met with her this morning and, as we prepared to get back to work, she closed our conversation with, “Every time I meet with you, I feel like I leave a better person. You are a good person. Talking with you makes me better.”

Internally, several things happened at once. My heart was warmed by her encouraging words, and my brain signaled that I should correct her thinking that I am a good person. I thought for an instant that it might be the right time to tell her about Jesus – that there is nothing good in me apart from him – but the moment didn’t seem right.

Meanwhile, she continued, “I was upset this morning before I met with you, but you have such a big, happy smile that I cannot help but be in a better mood. I always love meeting with you.”

I gave her a hug and thanked her for her kind, encouraging words. It is wonderful to receive affirmation from friends (and especially from colleagues)! But I also sensed that there may be more work for me to be done here – at least in this relationship. I believe God is not finished with the mere streams in this desert. He desires to transform it into a fertile land.

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33 He changes rivers into deserts,
    and springs of water into dry, thirsty land.
34 He turns the fruitful land into salty wastelands,
    because of the wickedness of those who live there.
35 But he also turns deserts into pools of water,
    the dry land into springs of water.
36 He brings the hungry to settle there
    and to build their cities.
37 They sow their fields, plant their vineyards,
    and harvest their bumper crops.
38 How he blesses them!
    They raise large families there,
    and their herds of livestock increase…

43 …Those who are wise will take all this to heart;
    they will see in our history the faithful love of the Lord.  (Psalm 107)

Authentically Aurora

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4 thoughts on “Streams in the Desert

  1. God’s plans are so complex that we wouldn’t get it even if he showed us a diagram. You may have had a peek behind the curtain, but I wouldn’t give up the dream of teaching so you can support your coworkers in a job you no longer like. (Not that I thought you would, but it was worth saying.) Wherever you are in the future, God will continue sending people who need what you offer in your direction. J.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree, J. I didn’t know quite how to word it in this post, but I am hoping (and planning) to continue pursuing teaching, all the while keeping up this friendship outside of work. I can continue to build relationships with current coworkers even after they stop being coworkers.

      May I ask for your prayers? I took my state teaching exam 11 days ago and still do not have my scores, even though they said I should have the scores in 3-5 days. Also, “Seth” and I just got back from our trip to California, and although it was mostly good, we had a pretty significant conflict on our way home. We both want to stay together but are unsure our extreme introversion (me) and extroversion (him) are compatible in the long term.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sometimes we encourage others in a way unknown to us. That is the beauty of it. We don’t even know when our words act as a fuel to others. So we should not stop speaking good to others and feeding good to ourselves. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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