I mentioned in a previous post about my hardships that I have been going through lately. One of the big ones has been employment. Long story short, Superman and I realized it would be smart (and helpful) if I could find a job this school year to help with finances. Thus began this wonderous journey of rejection.
I have also mentioned before my past history with child care. I have spent most of my life taking care of other people’s children. When I was 12 years old, I began babysitting. I believe I was fourteen or fifteen when my piano teacher hired me to watch her kids during lessons. I spent most of my teenage years babysitting in some shape or form. When I was eighteen, I got a job at Dairy Queen for three months before switching jobs to working in a before and after school program (I worked there for five years). I then taught preschool, toddlers, potty training, Kindergarten, pre-Kindergarten, and basically every age from 6 weeks to 12 years, I had provided some form of care/education. All this experience is also accompanied by a couple of degrees in Child Development and basic medical (CPR, First Aid, giving meds) training. I give you this run down because I want to emphasize how qualified I am to take care of other people’s children.
For the past two months, I have been applying for many child care/ nanny-ing jobs. During these two months, I have had a range of seemingly insane things happen. I have had people not show up for interviews, I have had people swear up and down they were going to hire me, then hire someone else, I have had people hire me, then change their mind a few days before care is supposed to begin. It has been the makings of a great sitcom, but a very frustrating and disheartening time. I began to doubt myself, my worth, my capability.
Superman would come home and I would be a melancholy shell of my former self. After a few weeks of it, he was fed up. He gave me the greatest telling off in the history of our marriage. Did I cry? Absolutely, but I agreed with him 100%. Something had to change, and the only thing I had control over was my attitude.
I had been praying and pleading with my Heavenly Father, begging for a job, guiadance to said job, or even just a hint (is it smaller than a bread box? Is it an animal, vegetable, or mineral?). My search for answers seemed to just grow as I continued not getting jobs. It sucked, but I needed to stay positive.
This situation has ruined my sleep. I have been going to bed late and waking up early, tossing and turning all night. I woke up before Princess Pea and laid awake for a while before getting up and going about my morning routine. When I had extra time without Pea, I flipped open my scriptures for my morning study. I had just started the Book of Ether. I have always loved the Book of Ether.
There has just been something about the story of the Brother of Jared that I have always been drawn to. The timeline is when the tower of Babel was built. Jared and his brother knew that the Lord was going to be angry with the people and confound their languages. Jared recognized his brother’s faithfulness and closeness to the Lord and asked him to pray that they would be saved from this consequence. This is the beginning of their journey. They end up traveling away from civilization and the change in languages, looking for a promised land. The Lord guides them and blesses them along the way. When they learn that the place they need to go is across the ocean, they pray and the Lord gives them very specific instructions on how to build barges to cross the ocean.
The brother of Jared follows the instructions to the letter. When they are completed, he realizes there is one aspect the Lord has not given him: Light. The design of the barges is completely sealed, but yet there is a solution for air, food, etc, but not light. Knowing they can’t go on this journey in the dark, the brother of Jared asks the Lord about this problem. The Lord answers him “What will ye that I should do that ye may have light in your vessels?” He then goes on to explain what won’t work to the brother of Jared then concludes with “Therefore what will ye that I should prepare for you that ye may have light when ye are swallowed up in the depths of the sea?”
The chapter ends there. It’s a cliff hanger. I’ve heard this story so many times in my life, I understood perfectly that the Lord does this so that the brother of Jared can think and problem solve (a.k.a learn) for himself. I’m sure he pondered for a long time, contemplating what solution there could be. He then gets an idea. He goes and digs (mines) ore from the earth and then heats it, melts it, and forms new rocks, different rocks. I have always imagined the stones as being clear, but they might not have been. He may have just worked them until they were rid of any impurities. The brother of Jared then returns to the Lord and tells Him his plan.
“I know, O Lord, that thou hast all power and can do whatsoever thou wilt for the benefit of man; therefore touch these stones, O Lord, with thy finger, and prepare them that they may shine forth in the darkness; and they shall shine forth unto us in the vessels wich we have prepared, that we may have light while we shall cross the sea. Behold, O Lord, thou canst do this. We know that thou art able to show forth great power, which looks small unto the understanding of men.”
As I read this section, I was hit hard. I knew, like the brother of Jared, that the Lord can do all things. He could give me the perfect job, but like the brother of Jared, I needed to figure this out for myself. I also realized that like the brother of Jared, I needed to go to work. I had been telling the Lord what I wanted, what I thought I needed. I needed to problem solve.
I noticed on this page, something that I had written. I don’t remember what had me write it, but I do know that it was what I needed right now. The top of the page I had written and stared “You are the creative force in your life”. Right then I knew that I had the power to make my life work. I had the power to overcome this, and that I could do anything as long as my partner was the Lord.
We are all like the brother of Jared. We have challenges to overcome, problems that we must solve. Sometimes the Lord will give us very specific and detailed instructions to solve our problem, but other times (and I feel like this is more often) we must come up with our own solution, start the process, and then bring it to the Lord. I know that He is pleased when we use our knowledge, our talents, our resources, our abilities, and our creativity to come up with our own solutions.
I am sure that the brother of Jared’s solution tied back to what he knew, he understood, his talents, and his abilities and resources. The Lord knows what our strengths and weaknesses are. He knows how our mind works and he knows what things we can work out for ourselves.
If you are feeling like you’re not getting the answer, maybe it’s because you need to make it.
How have you made your own answer?
P.S. I forgot to mention a vital part of the story. After the brother of Jared created his solution, he had a profound and amazing spiritual experience that brought him to know the Lord better than before. After the trials, we will know Christ.