I can look back on my life journey and recognize the “mile markers,” especially in my career. Throughout a period of testing and waiting I would be distraught, overcome with the task of finishing the assignment. But at those points in my juncture, God would move. Something would change. Someone would take notice of me and give me a reprieve. But only prior to me being thrown right back into the waiting again.

I think about my first job after college. It was way beneath my qualifications and the level of success that my shiny degree promised. And yet, that’s where God put me. It’s much better to be in the purpose of the Divine than in the high places of society. As the Psalmist said, it is better to be a doorman in the house of God (Psalm 84:10).

Sometimes the house of God looks like a grungy call center.

You just need eyes to see.

I had already been through the wringer before I got to that place and while in it, one day, I broke down. Literally. I was in tears with my head bowed at my desk. I had so greatly desired to please God by completing my assignment there but I had nothing left. I threw in the towel. It was at that point, I felt a gentle nudge on my shoulder from a manager. She was offering me a new position. It was the reprieve I needed. Now, that position fell through and I entered a new juncture of waiting and a season of testing, but it was used to get me through that time period

It would be at least another six months before there was any real elevation, though, and that elevation would be followed with more testing. But what I can say is that there are certain signs in my life that I recognize occur before a promotion.

Years after that experience at the call center, I was back in the waiting. This one lasted three years. Can you see how the time is getting longer? When we are growing and maturing, God will stretch us even more. The higher we go in Him, the harder the tests. The difference was that as I was nearing the end of that season, I didn’t have an emotional breakdown (at least, not one I can remember). Instead, I entered into a state of contentment. (1 Tim 6:6-7) 

One evening, I was standing at the window at work. Everyone else had left. My schedule started later than others and I had the benefit of enjoying the after-work quiet for a good hour after most of my colleagues clocked out at 5 pm. While gazing out the window I inhaled and released a breath. I had surrendered. I was done hoping for any changes in my career. Any promotion that my 2nd degree had promised. I had been in that place for almost 9 years and gave up the fight that I would get anywhere in it. I was ok if nothing ever moved, or changed. It was within that week, maybe even the next day, that I was released.

One sign of when my season is changing is that type of contentment. I can see other periods of transition when I reach that place and then there is a shift. The open door comes. It is like God is saying, “There. You learned the lesson. It’s time to move on.”

Another sign is me reaching that emotional breaking point. Sometimes when I reach that point He offers a reprieve like the one I discussed at the call center. He won’t necessarily remove me from the assignment, but He will give me something to keep me going in it. Other times, He will release me altogether.

After I was laid off from my 9-year job, He did this. Instead of an open door in my career, I found myself in another 6-month waiting period. I was unemployed and couldn’t get work. On top of that, my roommate had moved out which meant no help with the rent. My anxiety was at an all-time high. I didn’t know how I would make it financially. I was at the end of my rope and had given up. That was when the Father moved. My landlord offered me an admin position which opened the door for my training in Accounting and using my degree. That position also gave me an up-close view of entrepreneurship.

Are there reoccurrences you can see in your life that point to an ending of a season?

Are there things that happen that indicate to you that it’s time to transition? If you don’t see them now, look again.

When we are eager for the new season to manifest it gets hard to wait, especially when we have already been waiting. Have already been put through the wringer. But what I can see in my life is that there is an additional waiting period after the waiting period. I see it in my career very clearly. 

After college, I waited 4 months to get a job. For a year I was tested at that job. I finally passed that test and was released from the job only to enter another 2-month period of waiting before the next open door. 5 years into that position I was tested for 3 years. It was the career assignment I had spent the longest in. It was my “Promised Land.” I had gone through so much to get there, but I could not be settled there. I was called to advance. But before my advancement, there was more testing. More waiting. It wasn’t until the release after 6 months of unemployment, that I entered into the next level of my career and purpose. But even that was not going to be a sweet season. It was preparation for the call. All of it is preparation for the call.

As I’m currently in a space of waiting I realize my false expectations. I keep expecting to be released and promoted after the season of waiting. The season of waiting is long enough. I went through enough. Yet even after that period, God is saying, “Go through it some more.” It is illogical to me. I expect promotion after the test. But the Father’s desire is for greater reward. Greater advancement. And so the level He is calling me to is greater than I can imagine, which means His level of testing is greater than I can imagine. He also desires that the manifestation of the promotion be supernatural. Anything I can do in and of myself is natural. He is supernatural and we are supernatural, so the manifestation must be outside of our natural limitations.

Years ago I told a close friend, “It’s like God is trying to have me obtain extra credit and I’m just trying to pass the class.” It’s like His desires far exceed anything I could ever think up. Almost like He is saying, “Nicole, I want to make you a billionaire,” and I am saying, “But Jesus, I just want to pay my bills!”

At the end of the day, it’s not about my bills (although I still need them paid!). It’s about the kingdom. It’s about purpose. It’s about the people attached to our lives.

It is selfish to think of only our own wants and desires, even if society teaches us otherwise. Society says it’s good to elevate, it’s good to climb the ladder, it’s good to be successful. I think God is saying, That is good if it is bringing about your highest self. Your highest self is made in His image. Your highest self is glorifying Him.

Are you in a place where you are waiting?

Are you in a place where He is saying, “Yes, you have done well. You have waited. You have been put through the wringer. Now do it again.”?

I know that place. I have been in that place. I am now in that place. And I can tell you, friend, that the sooner you submit, release, and agree, the sooner you will be elevated. Then you will see, He had a bigger picture in mind concerning you.

It was never about you. It was always about those you would reach.

Key Scriptures:

Psalm 84:10

1 Tim 6:6-7

Prayer:

Father, I thank You that though I do not know what is happening in the natural You do and it is all in Your hands. Everything concerning me is in Your hands. You have orchestrated all things to work in my favor (Rom 8:28) and bring about my best self. Thank You that even though the waiting is long and the suffering is great, the reward will be greater. Thank You for revelation of Your times and seasons in my life. For the revealing of how You move with me so that I can be comforted by understanding . Your intent is good toward me. You know the plans you have for me and they are all to prosper and for my good (Jer 29:11-13). Promotion always comes after the test. Father thank You that I have already passed the test. I have passed all of Your tests because You know my limitations and boundaries and You manifest Your supernatural power for me to overcome and be resilient. You will not do what is unnecessary. Every test is for my good.  

In other news…Did you know that I just dropped my debut novel When Love Wins? You can check out more here! This time around there is an audiobook in addition to the eBook and paperback versions. Make sure you are subscribed to my email list to catch special offers, discounts, insider information, and more!

Are you on Instagram/Facebook? If so, please reach out. I have a series called “Word of the Day Wednesdays” where I share 5-10 minutes worth of nuggets that are on my heart, which I hope are encouraging to others on IGTV/FB Live! I have these also posted on my Youtube Channel.

And, lastly, if you have read “Stories for the (Urban) Soul, please put up an Amazon review here. I was SUPER encouraged and blessed when a new reader put up her review for my 2nd book which you can view here :).

As always, thank you for your support!

 

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