Where is my solace?
Several months ago I applied and interviewed for a job that led to some unusual experiences. Forgive me for keeping a few of the details aloof, but I feel it is best to do so.
I had applied on a whim. There was a chance I was qualified, and a chance that I was not. When they called me in for the interview I was surprised and excited. They told me they had conducted a nationwide search, mostly by word of mouth and networking. They also posted the job on their website, where just one day before the opening closed, I saw it and applied. I was one of very few people who applied blind like that. And I was the only local candidate brought in to interview.
The interview went really, really well. I was shocked how well it went. When I left I told a few of the close friends/family that knew about the interview that basically if I didn't get it, I knew the person who got it must really be better qualified than I was, because interviews just don't get better than that. And I could live with that.
Several people were fasting and praying for me to get that job. It seemed ideal for me. It really did.
A few weeks longer than anticipated I got the call. They explained that I did not get the job. They had decided to hire from within- something that had not anticipated doing. But they wanted me to know how much they liked me, yada yada.
I was devastated, but what can you do? I allowed myself a few days to shake it off, pick myself up, and move on. But like I said, I was very disappointed.
(It wasn't long after that experience that I applied (again on a whim and blindly) to the job I have now.)
Almost 2 months passed when I got a call out of the blue. The president of that organization called me personally. I was so stunned I could barely speak on the phone. He asked if I could come in to his office- the very next day. Having no idea what he could possibly want to talk to me about, I went in.
He related some very unexpected personal experiences to me. He's a religious man and the job was tangentially religious. I would be working with a lot of fellow Mormons had I gotten the job. He told me something that really stuck with me. "He doesn't pray about who the new marketing director will be." Those were his exact words. He prays about personal things, and he prays about important things. But rarely, if ever, in his life has he ever prayed about business matters, let alone employee hires.
He went on to explain that he did not pray about who to hire for the position. He said it was clear to him, and to everyone on the search committee, that I was the best fit. When they went to sit down and make it a formal agreement to offer me the job, I believe he said they went around the table and all agreed to it. But then one person paused, and another. And they asked for more time. He explained that then and there he had a very personal, spiritual witness to hire someone else. Interesting note on that- that other person was also on the search committee and had also voted to hire me. He was as surprised as anyone else when this happened. (I know this because I went on to meet with him later and talk about a few things.)
It wasn't fun or easy to hear that for some reason God passed me over. That people had a spiritual experience that led to not giving me a job. But it did make it somewhat easier to accept that this had happened. (It helped that during the course of this conversation I knew I had a job interview lined up for the very next week. And yes, that was the job I did get.)
It gave me some clarity and closure as to how and why I did not get this ideal job and seemingly perfect situation. It gave me peace in spite of my disappointment.
This week I've had a lot of other disappointments and confusion to sort out in my heart. Things that seemed so obvious, so easy, and even at times spiritually guided did not work out. Something I prayed at great length about many times, and had some very personal spiritual experiences with, came back to break my heart and hurt me in the end. Tonight I prayed and asked why did I have to be led into a situation that would only hurt me in the end? Why couldn't I be spared? I got nothing from it. There was little happiness along the way. I am not a better person for the trial. There was no growth or challenges overcome. So why did I have to do it? Why couldn't I be told no, not to pursue it, somewhere along the way?
I have no answers.
But I do have the memory of the job interview and the knowledge that sometimes spiritual guidance comes when and where you least expect it. You can do everything right, but sometimes, it just isn't going to work out, and it isn't your fault.
That all being said, my poor, repeatedly bruised and broken heart, looks forward to not being hurt or disappointed someday.