Moving to Rochester, we knew we were taking a giant leap of faith. No jobs, no connections—the money, well, that runs out in October.
In my last post, “God Has Never Been to Rochester,” I ended the monologue with a list of prayer requests. I’m hesitant about prayer requests, always have been. To me, prayer requests are just selfish opportunities for us to talk about ourselves.
That sounded a bit rough. How about this? It’s not the act of a prayer request that bugs me—considering real fellowship should allow for this—but the average shallowness I find in their content.
“Pray that I get into that school…”
“Pray that my house sells…”
“Pray for wisdom about all my money…”
I’ve always (well, more lately than earlier in life) have been bothered by the notion of shallow prayers. Why are we praying for a more affluent life? How is this God’s will? Why would God bless an American with a “sold house” while allowing third-world men, women, and children to suffer and die from lack of food and water?
It all just seems a bit… hyper-self-absorbed.
(My Brother-in-Law, Tyler, just wrote a great blog on shallow prayers which prompted some of these thoughts).
Valid concerns or not, my struggle with prayer, and more so, the public forum of prayer, is such. So, what did I do? I caved in and listed a bunch of prayer requests on my blog, one of which was for a job, for my wife.
Yesterday, 10:35 AM…
We were sitting in the car, outside of the Rochester City School District office. Megan held a notebook. In it were addresses for all of the Rochester school district offices—in geological order thanks to an intense Google Map campaign from the night before.
The plan was to spend all day. We’d drive to each district office; Megan would stop in, say hello; I’d wait in the car. She’d come back, and then we’d drive to another. Simple. In no time we’d be celebrating with a shiny new job, right?
She wasn’t very excited, lovely introvert as Megan is, to interrupt strangers all day long just to introduce herself. But she mustered up the courage. “I’ll be right back,” she said, her eyes revealing regret.
She walked across the street and into the first district office on the list; left by myself, I picked up her notebook and read the addresses. Nine more…
I knew I needed to pray. I just didn’t want to. It didn’t feel right. A job? It feels, so… so selfish. A minute passed. Something, I don’t know what, was pushing me to pray… so I closed my eyes.
“Okay, God. I’m praying for a job. Right now. Not later, right now. This place. I know it’s silly, and you’ve got bigger fish to fry, but we’ve traveled a helluva long way on the faith that you’d provide, and I’m calling You out on Your promise.”
A minute passed.
“PS, I love you.”
Another minute passed. I looked at my watch.
Finally, she exited the building. I watched her walk back to the car with her head hung low. She opened the door and sat down. I prepared for the worst. She looked up at me, with her face glowing and a great big smile:
“I got a job!”
Forever, it seems, we just sat there absolutely stunned. Eventually we broke into laughter and headed home, calling it a day.
God provides. I’m not sure why, but He does. Thanks be to God, and to everyone who has been praying. It makes no sense to me, but right now I feel loved.