Whenever I’m nervous about something or dreading what lies ahead in my day, I try to schedule a treat or reward. That way I can look forward to it and not focus as much on the dilemma I have before me.
I recently had a second interview for a lucrative job near Santa Monica. That’s where I planned to reward myself after I survived my appointment. Just knowing this reward was on the horizon, put a twinkle in my eye and a high kick in my step.
I ended up having a wonderful interview and changed my “dress up” clothes to my beachwear and hopped in the car to drive to the beckoning waves of Santa Monica Beach.
As I walked the boardwalk I pondered every move I made and every word I spoke just ten minutes earlier at this monumental (in my head) job opportunity. I felt satisfied in what I accomplished, gave thanks to God for the blessings, and robotically spoke my well-rehearsed lines of “not my will but yours be done Lord.” Knowing full well I meant, let your will Lord, be exactly what I want…Amen.
I thought about the time it took to get ready, the drive to the audition, the drive home, and the waiting around for my name to be called. All the while checking out my competition, who I undoubtedly compared myself to with varying results. All of this and the torture I put myself through and the anticipation of wanting something so badly, for five minutes in a room full of strangers who have the power to choose what flavor of actor they want that day.
My mom used to say,” if I had a boyfriend or a husband, who treated me the way your career treats you, I would have left him long ago.’ Yet, acting and singing is what my heart chooses, and all I long to do, or know how to do. And with each audition I am filled with hope and expectation because this might be the one!
Walking amidst God’s coloring book of sea and sky and sand, I can’t help but feel close to His creative artistry and awesome majesty. I know He’s a heartbeat away. I can easily “offer up a sacrifice of praise” amidst the beauty of the landscape, surrounded by families and lovers and friends giggling and dancing in the crash and echoing roar of foamy white billows. There is not one person here without a smile. All seems well with the world, and I can forget for a moment about the phone call that may lead to a new job. The dinner I will have to make for two hungry men when I arrive home and walk through our door. Back to reality, not make believe.
They will ask me how it went, and I will say good, and we will pray that this job will be mine. But it’s hard to explain to them the roller coaster of emotions that go in to each audition. And the hardest part, which is the waiting.
Each time I get a call back, or a job, I’m in awe, because I know how miraculous it really is and I know who should get the real glory. I’ve been blessed with some really great jobs, but as an actor I tend to focus on the ones I haven’t got. If these are the gifts God has given me, shouldn’t it be easier to use them? And at the same time get paid for them? I wonder if God is inundated with people begging for the same role I’m crying out for? And how does He decide who gets which one this time? I know He’s a good Father. That is truth. So if I’m also a kind Mother, who wants the best for her son, and is relentless in seeking only good for him, than what will it take for me to trust in God’s plans for me?
When my son has a tantrum for not getting his way, or when my dog whines incessantly for my food, I don’t get up and walk away or turn my back on them. I do have to confront their childish behavior, but with gentleness and love, knowing ahead of time that what they’re seeking will not be good for them. But alas, I do tire of my dogs begging and end up giving him some scraps from my plate (like the Canaanite woman in Matthew 15:27). So too I end up crying and throwing temper tantrums and begging like her, or even the beggar boy in Oliver “Please sir, may I have some more?’ Yet Jesus does take pity on the Canaanite woman and admires her feisty faith.
Until the Lord teaches me how to “be still and know that He is God,” I will continue my noisy shenanigans of waiting upon His answer with theatrics, and sighs and tears, and thankfulness simmering just underneath. Knowing that I will trust in the Lord with all my heart, and lean not on my own understanding. Psalm 3:5-6.
For He really is a good Father.