“I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” – Jeremiah 29:11
She’s always had a lot of drive: studied hard, received good grades in school, and did whatever was asked of her. Being successful was never in question, but what was her calling? Where would she fit in? This had always been an issue for her. In school, she was different. She wasn’t popular like the cheerleaders and jocks, nor was she a brainiac, tough guy or band geek. She was a less than perfect, slightly overweight misfit with a handful of friends. Living out in the country made it difficult to hang out with anyone. Every night she asked God, “Where do I fit in?” Every night God responded, “Have patience. I have plans for you.” So she waited…patiently.
She went to college and experienced similar problems with fitting in but managed to meet a few people whom she would later call her friends. It was a struggle, and sometimes a painful one, and when things got too tough to handle, she asked God, “Where do I fit in?” He replied, “Have patience. I have plans for you.” So she waited again…patiently.
After college, she continued to grapple with her life plans, trying to find the right job that would take advantage of her talents but knew she would have to pay her dues in order to become successful. But what is being successful? Doing what she wanted, what her family wanted, or what God wanted. Sitting quietly one evening after a stressful day, once again she asked God, “Where do I fit in?” There was no response, and she wept. Crawling underneath the blankets of her bed, she continued to cry until she fell asleep. Somewhere in her dreams, she felt a hand brush her hair from her eyes and wipe the tears from her cheeks. A voice spoke, “Relax and rest now. I have a plan and have bestowed it upon you. Just follow your heart and you will find your way.”
The next morning she woke and felt lighter than she had in years. She followed her heart because that is what she had been told to do. She married and moved west. She woke up early every morning, got dressed, headed to her car, and off to work she went. Personality clashes sometimes made the workplace feel hostile and unwelcoming, but she knew she needed to persevere as the economy was weak and jobs were scarce. At night, she came home and spent time with her husband and tried to forget the stress. Day in and day out the routine rarely changed. At times she still felt as if she didn’t fit in but always remembered that God had a plan for her.
As children life seems fairly easy, but when adulthood arrives, life can and will be complicated. All of us struggle with decision-making, especially when it comes to the workplace and our careers. Trying to fit in no matter where we work can be draining. We are all so different in many ways; strong personalities can tend to drive the constant struggle for positions of prestige, power, or just plain superiority. But God has a plan and designed each of us to be uniquely and spiritually different.
God has been gracious, and we must be willing to accept his plans. We will struggle and fall. Our spirituality will be wounded, but we must get up, brush off the dust and start moving again. God has only good things in mind for us, and when we let go and allow His plans to unfold, life becomes easier and less complicated. Fitting in will no longer be an issue. Embracing all that is bestowed upon us by Him will increase our spiritual wellness not only in the workplace but in all aspects of our lives.
Throughout her career, she worked in a variety of industries giving her best in order to make a difference to the people around her. She continued to do this until she wasn’t needed any longer, and it was time to move on to help someone else. One evening as she lay quietly and listened to the sounds of the rain pattering against the window, she sighed and said to God as she fell asleep, “I know where I finally fit in. Thank you for showing me the way.” Somewhere in her dreams, she felt a hand brush the hair out of her eyes and a voice whisper in her ear, “Rest now Susan. My plans for you are great. Keep following your heart, and you will always find the way to fit in.”