Letter to Someone I Love on the Event of Starting a New Job!
“I always experience Fight or Flight syndrome at the beginning of new things, new people, new ways. I feel overwhelmed by what I don’t know, overwhelming fear of disappointing. . . of not being good enough. . .but then I think about how in two-months time, the new will have become old hat, so I squash down that Monster Fear and Monster Insufficiency and push on with often only sheer determination and surety God is by my side. Determination to not give up and God by my side always make all the difference. Love you! You will be just what you need.”
In July, I started a new thing. . . .
A new coffee shop and bakery opened. I had stopped by for a cup of coffee and a muffin – and came home with a job offer! I wasn’t looking for a baking job but I’d always wanted one – in a coffee shop bakery. When I prayed and weighed about doing this, one question kept coming to mind: Would I regret that I didn’t do this in five years? God asked me to be honest, to push aside the fear of doing something so very new but not new, something I didn’t have a piece of paper affirming my qualifications, something I’d done only for family and friends – and the answer was a firm, “Yes, in five years, I would have been disappointed in myself.”
So, what’s supposed to have been a couple days a week has turned into four for now while I learn new things as part of someone’s Dream Team. I love baking but my dream isn’t to own a bakery and coffee shop, but it is grace to be a part of that team – as a bake. . . .
Every morning under my clock-in name is the title, “Baker” – one word affirming I can learn new things. . . do new things. . . in new places. . . at 58 years old. . .
Bread and Rolls always seemed overwhelming in my house, within my boundaries. Pie crusts – weren’t much worth the time because my lack of confidence making, rolling and trying to dress up always made me feel graceless . The Monster Fear walked with its companion The Monster Insufficiency.
My mentor, this delightful shop’s owner, with great patience (long-suffering), guidance and encouragement, has spent weeks training me to overcome. I pushed Fear of Failure aside through determination, though my legs felt like jelly and trust that I could was faith that directions are true: I’ve mastered bread dough, cutting and dividing dough, rolling out dough – and turning it into heavenly cinnamon rolls and buns. Pie Crusts – done up prettily? Because I didn’t give up – I’ve overcome pie crusts, too.
In this New Thing I work with ingredients that turn into comfort. . . because, even baking in someone else’s kitchen, baking someone else’s recipes, being on someone else’s dream team. . . cooking/baking is never just baking. . .
Mornings measuring silky flours,
gritty brown and sugars. . .
ever contagious powdered sugars,
butters, creams and milks,
chocolates, peanut butters and nutella,
blueberries, cranberries, strawberries,
lemon and orange zests
a baker’s delightful ingredients
turning into comfort, celebration
called muffins, scones, and all kinds of rolls
That Monster Fear? It’s companion Insufficiency? They were there 37 years ago when I started my first newspaper job – and hoping I would get the punctuation correct in obituaries or that the city commissioner, county judge executive, even Mitch McConnell running for the Kentucky State Senate, wouldn’t guess I had more determination than understanding and send me packing without an interview , 35 years ago when I started graduate school and faced my first classroom full of students, each semester with new students, the office job at the university for 3 years – and now baking for a lovely bakery coffee shop – Fear and Insufficiency tried to horn in every time, making me feel I didn’t belong, wasn’t good enough, capable enough, smart enough – would I be found out?
Fear and Insufficiency have stalked me, threatened me, left me shaking in my soul shoes all my life. . . but for God! My Father who gave me courage, the determination to stand instead of flying away. . . .
. . . . so for the last month, I’ve been standing to mix, to roll out, to learn new things and new ways. . . standing with the One who goes with me, who tells me :
“Be strong and courageous.
Do not fear or be in dread of them,
for it is the LORD your God who goes with you.
He will not leave you or forsake you.”
~ Deuteronomy 31:6
When my boys were little, I’d tell them, “Slay that Monster FEEEAAAARRRRR” – using my best prophet voice. . . . they’d always roll their eyes. . . . I don’t think they realized I was speaking from experience. There are some things we need to tell ourselves over and over again because new things happen and in the new, sometimes, we just need a reminder of what we know. . . . because the new can kind of dazzle and overwhelm, trying to hide what we know.
This new thing – it’s a thread weaving in with the other threads of myself. I’m still taking photos – and honing those skills. I’m still writing – there’s a book so dear to my heart coming out in September – and I’m working on another – but for a couple days a week, I bake. . . and I practice being strong and courageous in someone else’s kitchen.
Thank you, Father, for encouraging me to do this new thing. . . thank you for standing with me while I battle Monsters like Fear and Insufficiency. . . and thank you that directions are more often true than not – in things like knitting and baking. Thank you that even at 58, there are new adventures, new usefulness, new things to learn. I am so glad that I trust you to push me through the doors you know are best and good for me – the push being your answer when I prayed about what to do. . . I love you, Father – for always being there and giving me the best guidance. Love, your daughter!
Remember Me Monday: #14 & Linky
“I’ll make a list of God’s gracious dealings,
all the things God has done that need praising,
All the generous bounties of God,
his great goodness to the family of Israel—
~ Isaiah 63:7, The Message
In the Old Testament, God repeatedly, quietly and loudly, tells his children, “You have forgotten me!” (Jeremiah 3:32, Ezekiel 22:12, to name a few). It’s a heart cry from a father to a child who has forgotten all the love, all the saving, helping, little and big blessings – and it leaves me stunned when I realize our Father, the creator of the universe, who knows things I cannot begin to fathom, who authors storylines that leave me amazed, delights in all of us so much, He cries out, “Remember Me.”
While every day is a Remember God Day, I am inviting you to join me on Monday mornings to come by and remember what God has done for you, for your family. Maybe God sent a cardinal darting out in front of you, as if to tell you, “I’m here,” or broke a child’s fever after you laid it all down at His feet in a 2 a.m. bedside vigil. Maybe He stood with you in the wait of a prayer sent out, or brought someone you loved to Christ. Maybe He healed your broken heart, gave your courage, or you gave Him your dreams as a love offering only to have Him give them back in an unimaginable way. Maybe God helped you survive to bedtime after a crazy Monday, or forgive yourself for missing it with your kiddos –– Whatever it is, let’s Remember Him. . . in a “Remember Me Monday” love letter.
“My mouth will tell of your righteousness,
Of your salvation all the day long,
Though I know not its measure.
I will come and proclaim your mighty acts, O Sovereign Lord”
~ Psalm 71:15-16.
Let us delight in Him by telling the stories of what He’s done! If you wrote a blog post remembering what He’s done for you, join the linky. If you didn’t but still want to praise Him for what He’s done – write it in the comment section. Then visit a comment before or after yours! One of the beautiful things about the blogging community is the relationships it builds!
Rules? Write long or short, a list or a story, include photos or not. Just Remember Him and what He has done, and let the gratitude of your heart guide you. Let’s make Monday so Rejoice, that the goodness of God spills into the rest of the week!
Places I’m Linking at This Week:
Inspire Me Monday, Grace & Truth, Global Blogging, Senior Salon, Hearth and Home,
Purposeful Faith, Tell His Story, InstaEncouragement,
Recharge Wednesday, Worth Beyond Rubies,
Share a Link Wednesday, Lyli Dunbar, Let’s Have Coffee, Legacy Link-Up,
Tune In Thursday / Salt and Light
Grace and Truth, Faith on Fire, Blogger Voices Network