Water, Water Everywhere? 7


The wait

I’ve written about it. I’ve given hearty assent to its value. I believe in it.

Yet, right now, as I’m living it, I find that my well-formed thoughts can miss their mark; my enthusiastic yes can weaken to a lackluster shrug; my carefully-nurtured faith can wobble some.

You see, right now, I’m in a season of waiting. And I don’t like it.

I’m waiting for God to show me what to do for work.

My husband asked me a brilliant question yesterday: “Honey, what feels most urgent to you—our financial needs or having your future settled?” I’m pretty sure he knew how I’d answer; after 38 years, this compassionate, intuitive man knows my heart very well.

“My future.”

I half expected …

… that when I began my job search in earnest last week, some sort of direction would make itself known. I faithfully checked off my to-do list:

  • Read another chapter of that book about finding work I love, check!
  • Research freelance proofreading jobs, check!
  • Meet with a local editor to learn more about the field of editing, check!
  • Meet with a career coach, check!
  • Pursue those two job leads, check!

A new thought

I was driving home from Baker City on Saturday, trying to keep my eye on the road when all I really wanted to do was gaze at the astoundingly big-sky masterpiece God was hand-brushing across the horizon. My mind flitted from one subject to another, from time to time corralling a wandering thought and tossing it to God in the form of a prayer. Once, I think God may have tossed one of His own thoughts in my direction:

Did you ever stop to think that the whole reason I have you looking for work is not, ultimately, about meeting your financial need? That maybe it’s because I have something for you to do, and this is My way of prompting you to find it?”

I liked that thought. It put a new spin on the urgency question. If God simply has this thing He wants me to do for Him, then He will bring it to me (or me to it) when the time is right.

Finding water

Recently, I watched Greg give our grandson Henry a drink from a water fountain. As Greg cradled Henry securely in his arm, holding him over the stream of water, Henry aimed his mouth to where he thought the water would be. As water squirted into his nose, eyes, and ears, I doubled over with laughter (composing myself just long enough to capture the moment on camera). As water sprayed everywhere, Henry persevered, wide-mouth-frog-like.

This is how life felt to me last week. I knew there was water to drink, and I was poised to gulp it in (courage from the Lord; doors to knock on; encouragement from others; timely insight from Scripture). But it felt like all these good things were missing their mark.

IMG_1913But you know what? My Father is not playing hide-and-seek with that water. He’s holding me tight, hand gripped on the spigot, aiming that sweet refreshment right where my mouth should be, gently directing me toward it.

This week I have a brand new checklist in front of me:

  • Write my resume
  • Ask my growing list of contacts about proofreading / editing / tutoring opportunities
  • Check job postings with local schools and colleges
  • Research companies who may be looking for blog writers
  • Sell my new Mentoring Worship Leaders book (more about that next week!)

I pray that as I keep checking off items, I get a little better at finding where that good water is.

And who knows? I might even find some good work to do in the end.

Listening (and searching) with you,




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7 thoughts on “Water, Water Everywhere?

  • melissa stadtlander

    So very thankful that our Father is holding you tight in His grip and directing that water right into your mouth in just the right amounts, the amount that He knows you need for each moment that He brings to you! I pray that you have known that this week as you have “checked off” things! Thank you again for sharing your heart and your walk with us! How it encourages me to see everything in my life as from His hand, His knowing heart for me that I can always trust! And how sweet it is when that water reaches our mouths and we drink it down, so refreshed and satisfied! :) Praying and trusting with you dear friend!

    • Jeanelle Reider Post author

      Such a sweet and encouraging picture for my heart today, my dear friend! I’ve tried to know it… thank you for praying I CAN! How glad I am that we are praying and trusting together, and reminding each other to recognize that refreshment. The sweetest gift.

  • Cleo A. Lampos

    I, too, have been waiting for direction on my writing. But the Lord has heard my cries and captured my tears. During the last week, I was called unexpectedly to host a book club that was discussing my book the next day. I substitute taught a writing class at St. Xavier Univesity and was allowed to sell my books.I spoke at the Chicagoland Church Librarian group and was well recieved. Meanwhile, other parts of my writing life have not gone so well, but my confidence that God hears and answers prayers in His timing and in amazing ways is bolstered. Jeanelle, you words that God wants us moving and working until we find what He wants is so true. Let’s keep on trucking and see what exciting things lie around the bend.

    • Jeanelle Reider Post author

      Cleo, I think of you often with your writing gifts, and your faithfulness to “keep trucking” in the use of them! And I pray for you! I love it when the Lord meets us in ways that are unmistakably from His loving, fatherly hand! I’m rejoicing with you over those tangible gifts of grace to you this past week—He did indeed hear your cries and capture your tears! I fervently hope that in the coming months there are fewer tears and many, many smiles!

  • Kind of brings back memories to this past August...As i was preparing the last bit of details for my daughters baby shower and "joyfully" anticipating the birth of my second grandson(who was due to be born in October), i recieved word from my family that

    As i walk through life as a woman in her “early” fifties(notice the emphasis on “early”? I have six months left before reaching the half way mark toward 60, so i prefer to stay in the “early” category!), i stuggle often with the physical, mental and emotional baggage that comes along with, well..should i say being a woman in her early to mid fifties!! Life never seemed this draining before! I’m so tired alot of the time, and sometimes it just “feels” like i should have more energy. On a positive note, I have sensed God using this time in my life to draw me in, and to draw me closer to Him. I have a “renewed excitement” about doing my weekly Beth Moore Bible study, and i find myself using this to take the focus off my “womanly” down times! So as far as your question; Have you found refreshment from Him this week? How? And where? I respond with a resounding Yes, and answer with a joyful heart, “meeting with God”, and with a greatful spirit, “digging into His precious Word”!!

    • Jeanelle Reider Post author

      Hey Karen, I’m rounding down until I hit 60! :) I LOVE that your “yes” is resounding, your heart is joyful as you meet with God, and your spirit is grateful as you dig into His precious Word! That’s exactly what’s going to keep you (and me) young and becoming more beautifully in the image of Christ even as the chronological years add up. I see that in you, my dear friend, so do be encouraged!