Kind of, Sort of, Almost an Answer to Prayer?

I have been praying for a job. I have a job, kind of.  Being a wife and a stay-at-home mom is definitely a job. But I am also a freelance writer and editor, and I have a position with a company writing one article a month. It used to be two articles a month, but at the beginning of the year, my workload was reduced., which of course meant my pay was also reduced–cut in half to be exact. I need to make up the difference. In fact, I need to make up more than the difference. But here’s the thing–I have never really had to pursue work; God has always brought the jobs to me.

Of course, after I got out of college, I went through the regular job-hunting process, and I was blessed to receive an offer in an editorial position where I worked for about two years. When my husband, Ian, took a job in another city, I submitted by resignation, but the company asked if I would consider working in a remote capacity from home. That was a huge blessing because we had begun to think about starting a family, and we had decided that I would stay home with our children. It would be great to have an income and still be able to stay home. Yeah God! That was huge.

Months later, after I found out I was pregnant, the company decided to bring the position back in-house, but the Lord continued to provide one opportunity after another to work at home. Someone always knew someone who would wind up hiring me for something.

Fast-forward twenty-plus years, and here I am again.  In a lot of ways, I have more time than ever before. My firstborn is out of the nest; my second isn’t too far behind. My two youngest boys, while still home schooled, are very capable of fending for themselves. I have more time than I have had in years, but I have less work. The need for income is still there, but the opportunities don’t seem to be finding me quite as easily.

I have been torn. Does this mean it’s time for me to start looking outside the home for employment? To be honest, that is a frightening prospect for this middle-age mama. It’s been years since I donned a nice pantsuit and marched into an office. For the last decade, the only clock I’ve punched has been my husband’s alarm clock. But almost two months have passed now. Despite numerous attempts to cut back, there isn’t a lot of margin in the budget, and my income, though not much to begin with, is still needed.

Is God listening? Does He hear? I’ve relied on Him to bring me the work for so long, was I supposed to do something differently this time?

After uploading my resume and applying online for several remote jobs, I received good news this week. A company responded to my mini-test and application. They had me perform another practice assignment writing product reviews. It was actually kind of fun. I received excellent feedback and was given access to the queue, where I could choose up to five assignments at a time. Praise God!

Then I asked about the pay. I wasn’t hoping for much. I knew that this wasn’t going to be an executive position or anything. I was hoping to make up what I had lost. I was sadly disappointed. Each assignment is worth $1.75.

Yep, you read that correctly–$1.75. Now, don’t get me wrong. These are very short product descriptions, but still they take time. They take a little research, and writing a short description can, in some ways, be more difficult than writing a long one. Being clear, concise, and clever–that’s one thing; keeping it to 80 words or less is another.  As you can probably tell, brevity is not my strong point. As of right now, it takes me about 30-45 minutes to complete one assignment–for a sum total of $1.75!

God doesn’t always answer our prayers the way we expect. In fact, I would venture to say He often doesn’t answer our prayers in ways that we expect.

In Isaiah 55:8-9 the Lord says, “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts. And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.  For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” 

And 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”

No, this job is not what I had in mind; it’s not exactly what I need in terms of salary, but it’s still provision. It’s still an income. It’s still a start.  And only God knows where it may lead or what He has planned to come next. So, today, I thank God for $1.75 product descriptions. I thank God for this opportunity. I thank God for this kind of, sort of, answer to prayer and wait to see what else He has in store.