My Toyota Scion sped pass the “Welcome to Maryland” sign. I’d been driving over twelve hours from my home in Orlando, Florida. Finally, my GPS announced I’d arrived. I pulled into the driveway and stared at the house I’d now call home. I resented the move—this disruption in my life—but I’d lost my job due to an economic crash.
I’d spent months praying and sending out resumes to no avail. Until one day I received an offer for a design position. The only problem…the job would require a move to Maryland. My heart sank at the thought of leaving life-long friends, family, and the only town I’d known as home; but I glanced at the stack of unpaid bills piled on my desk knowing I had no choice but to take it. God answered my prayers, just not in the way I envisioned.
Despite my discomfort and the fear I felt of the unknown, I packed my bags and followed the path He placed in front of me.
‘At least I’d have my sister,’ I thought.
I’d planned to live with her, her husband, and my two nieces for six to eight months, until I could get back on my feet. Although, grateful for the bedroom that housed all my belongings and the bath I shared with my nieces, I needed a place of my own.
I hustled every day to eliminate my debt. Before long, I searched for an apartment, but reality slapped me with a setback. The cost of living in Maryland/DC far exceeded the housing costs of central Florida. After paying my bills (car, cell phone, credit cards) there wasn’t enough money left over to afford the matchbox-sized apartments. I felt defeated, helpless, and filled with anxiety. I questioned if I’d misunderstood God to begin with.
While living with my sister, not wanting to intrude on her family, I spent much time alone; but I never felt alone. On long drives, I prayed over my circumstances. The moon slipped through the tall northeastern trees—trees I didn’t have back home. On those nights, God filled me with peace about my situation, and I grew closer to Him.
I chose to trust.
Meanwhile, as I financially bounced back so did the Florida economy. I didn’t want to overstay my welcome and applied for jobs in Florida again. While visiting my friends and family in Orlando, I reached out to a former rep of mine. He told me I’m in luck, his company was hiring. I applied and sadly, after two consecutive interviews I didn’t get the job.
A few days later, the owner of the company asked me—via text—to meet him that night at an ice cream shop. I thought it odd but agreed.
I arrived first and when I saw him enter I greeted him; but he seemed surprised to see me. While waiting in line we chatted. He stated his wife and kids sat outside on the patio. (Which explained his hefty order) I couldn’t understand why he’d bring the entire family, but silently prayed I’d get the job. I followed him to their table. I cracked jokes with his little ones and rubbed shoulders with his wife. After a while his wife made a comment about their friends being late in joining them. ‘There were more people joining us?’ I thought.
He glanced down at his phone and realized he’d been corresponding with me instead of his friends all along. He explained what happened. Embarrassed, we had a good laugh and finished out the evening. The following day, he offered me the job. He thought I handled myself well, and I would be a great addition to the team and work well with their clients. I accepted.
Looking back, I’m grateful for my time in Maryland. At that time, I didn’t see it as my wilderness journey. It was a time in my life I learned to lean on God and spend time with Him in constant conversation. Sometimes God calls you out of your comfort zone in order for you to learn to rely on Him solely. He calls you to a place His voice can’t be drowned out by the constant chatter; much like the Israelites wandering in their wilderness. The only option they had was to fully rely on His grace before He allowed them to enter their promised land.
A verse that played in my thoughts during this time was “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5 New International Version.
I recognize this time as a pivotal point in my life, but God didn’t stop there. A year later, He continued to open doors—one leading me straight into my husband-to-be’s office.
Today my efforts are no longer spent paying the bills but raising our twin boys. Isn’t it funny how God works? What about you? Has there been a time in your life God has called you out of your comfort zone so you would learn to lean on Him? I hope my story gives you hope in knowing that even when it seems like God has abandoned us… maybe it is because He has already planned it all out for us.
Lisa Sciacca is a regular contributing writer at The Hallelujah House. Her passion is her family and telling her story through photos. Lisa enjoys connecting with other moms and exchanging information and encouragement. You can see examples of Lisa’s work on instagram @Life_inPieces. Here, along with her photography, she shares what she’s learned along the way from recipes to quick teaching strategies. If you would like to connect with Lisa her email is life_in firstname.lastname@example.org. To read her complete profile, you can find her under the “Team” tab above.