Monday, August 15, 2011

Tiffany's Journey of Faith

"A man's heart plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps."  -- Proverbs 16:9 NKJV

I love this verse, because it describes the way the Lord works in our lives!  We make our plans, but He works behind the scenes directing our steps and illuminating our path! 

Earlier this summer, Tiffany considered moving here and decided to update her resume and knock on a few doors, just to see if the Lord might open any doors for her to teach here on the Georgia coast.  But, He did not . . . so she began to solidify her plans for staying in Albany this year, assuming that was God's will for her life.

Then suddenly, circumstances converged to create a crisis that required her to come to a screeching halt and face the fact that she simply could not afford to continue living on her own.  All teachers had been required to take a significant pay cut to keep the school afloat in these troubled economic times, and now her insurance was going up and her college loans were coming due . . . and she just couldn't stretch her income far enough to cover all of her expenses.

As she prayerfully and tearfully contemplated her options, she felt the Lord was at work . . .  She tried to be sensitive to His leading, and sensed that He wanted her to resign from her current teaching position and move here with us and see what He would provide . . . It certainly wasn't the way she had planned on moving -- which would have been to secure a job first!  But God's ways are rarely our ways!

So, she set a plan in motion . . . . and began the process of moving here and more fervently searching for a job in this area.  She was tempted to panic, as she saw bills coming due and no job in sight . . . but she kept trusting God to lead and provide . . .

Last week she decided to pray that God would provide her a job using her education, skills, and experiences by Friday.  If not, she would begin to look for any random job she could find.

On Friday morning, one of the teachers at Joe's school unexpectedly resigned with less than a week before the first day of school!  It was a crisis for the school administrator, who had to find someone to replace her before school started!  However, as she pored over resumes, one kept rising to the top . . .   

On Friday afternoon, Tiffany received a call from the school administrator to come by for an interview . . . and left there about 5 pm Friday with a JOB!    \o/

The amazing thing is that Tiffany had taken on many additional responsibilities in her previous school over the last year or so . . . because there was no one else to do it, and she has lots of initiative and enthusiasm, and is quite simply a first-born over-achiever!  :)  Her schedule seemed humanly impossible to me . . . as she not only taught third grade, but also taught all elementary electives (Spanish, Music, Computer, Art), put on two music programs a year, helped with the library and AR reading program after the Media Specialist left, assisted other teachers with their computers and lesson planning software, and planned and coordinated a very creative Open House/promotional event for the school.  And yet, nearly every area where she had acquired experience was an area of expertise that was needed for her new position!!  You see, nothing is wasted by God -- and her willingness to go way above and beyond at her previous school was what uniquely qualified her for this opportunity!!! 

So, she started her new job last Monday!  She is the IT specialist and Media Specialist and will be teaching elective classes in Library, Computer and Spanish!!  She gets to spend her days in the coziest little library and the students come to her for their electives.  Isn't that exciting??

We are all  marvelling at how God provided a job for her right at the wire, and how He prepared her for every responsibility she would have here! Meanwhile, the school is marvelling at how God provided a teacher for them at the last minute with the complete skill set they needed!!  (Both schools even use the same lesson planning software!)  Isn't God amazing??

Furthermore, if she had not already moved here, she would have been scrambling to pack up and move out of her apartment in Albany, and get settled here before starting a brand new job -- all in one weekend!!  Talk about Overwhelming!  She knows it was God's provision that she had already moved and gotten settled in here!!!!!

And guess what?  Part of what brought on the financial crisis that convinced her she needed to go ahead and make the move was a $400 charge that was withdrawn from her checking account erroneously.  That $400 has now been restored to her account!  We believe God may have arranged for that money to be taken out just to bring her to the point of crisis so she would go ahead and move here . . . even without a job!

Tiffany has kept her eyes on Jesus throughout this trial and her faith has grown by leaps and bounds, as she has seen Him work in the smallest details!

Recently, we have been participating in a life-changing study of John 15 with the ladies of our church, and learning about how our Heavenly Father prunes us so that we will bear more fruit.  Another purpose of pruning is to point us in a new direction of growth.  Pruning is painful -- but His purpose in pruning is always that our lives might bear more fruit for Him!!!!!  (Don't be surprised if you hear more about this topic in the days ahead!)   ;)

Have you seen God at work in your life or in your family's life in recent days?  I'd love to hear about it!


Mrs. Stam said...

Wow that is a amazing story of God's provision :-) Thanks for sharing and making me smile today!

Love reading these type of post!

Momof3girls said...

Thanks so much for sharing this story. I love reading stories where God worked out the details down to the very last one.

My youngest daughter is 13. She is dyslexic. I have homeschooled her since the beginning. She didn't learn to read until she was 9 and still has lots of problems with reading. This year, God told me to enroll her in a private school in the area, so I did. My husband isn't happy about this decision. I told God that He would have to provide the money for her schooling through my embroidery business. The tuition is $210 a month and the paces are $2.75 each. I will be billed each month for the paces that my daughter finishes. I had to pay $220 last Thursday. God provided every single penny from my business with some money left over. I got an order the other day for half of my daughter's tuition for one month. God just keeps amazing me every day. I know He will provide all the money needed for my daughter's schooling and I anxiously wait to see how He will do it.

Katie said...

What a wonderful story and testimony! Thanks for sharing!

Debbie @ Cheaper by the Bakers Dozen said...

Elizabeth, how fun and faith-building to hear about Tiffany's adventures. I really had not heard much about her since her injuries that kept her out of full-time music. God moves! In mysterious and awesome ways!

And you'll have her near you again. Super jealous...

waistingaway said...

What a wonderful, exciting story! I know you are all excited to have her closeby again! And to think of the blessing she will be at a new job ... God's timing is so amazing, when we just watch for it.
Thanks, Elizabeth, for sharing.

Noel said...

Wow!! What an encouraging story. Thanks for sharing :D

tlmalcolm said...

Great news about Tiffany. She will love being closer to her family for sure! And a perfect fit of a job for her. I do believe things happen for a reason! And a higher power than us is most often in charge. Tim had been working as a contract worker for the past year. decent salary but no benefits. He looked for other jobs but nothing really fit his salary needs. Then a few weeks ago he decided to apply to grad school at Tufts at the last minute. He got in and then the contract job ended but he was offered a full time position with the company....good raise and benefits. The best benefit...tuition reimbursement! I believe God was working with him during this process for sure!!

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