A New Part-Time Job

Five weeks ago I started a new job. I’m now working in a Surgical ICU on the night shift and I love it.  Well, all of it except the NSBS (Night Shift Brain Syndrome) I suffer for a couple of days after working my two nights a week. Yes, I said two nights a week.  I am now working two 12-hour shifts instead of the 32 hours I was working before. When my new co-workers find out I am “only” working two nights a week instead of the usual three it raises some questions.  One is, “how did you get them to do that?”  It seems that they haven’t allowed part-timers on this floor before.  Well, don’t I feel special! 🙂  I guess God was just paving the way  since I really didn’t want full-time.

The second question I am asked is “do you have another part-time job?” I was asked this on my third shift and I answered with a resounding NO. This was met with a quick, “that’s not true,” from one of my co-workers. She was the co-worker who had just asked to purchase my book for her grandson.  “She does too have another job.  She is an author!” Well.  Maybe I should hire her as my publicist!

So, the other night I was asked that question again and I answered with confidence. ” I’m an author and I am very busy the rest of the time with my writing business.”  Of course this led to a discussion about what I write and I was able to promote my book once again.

The whole idea of this being another part-time job has taken hold.  It actually has taken me by the throat and won’t let go.  Since returning from the Blue Ridge Christian Writers Conference I have so many ideas and goals running through my head there just doesn’t seem to be time to do it all. I have decided that since I work 24 hours at my “regular job” I’ll strive to put 16 hours a week into writing. Once I hit upon this “Plan” – I do love a plan –  I needed to know what areas to work on; otherwise I feel overwhelmed. My husband helped me brainstorm last night and we came up with these four areas that encompass my writing job.  You could call it my job description.

1). Promote the current book.

2). Revise the second book and find a publisher.

 3). Enhance my skill and craft.

 4). Develop freelance writing business (articles, columns, etc.).

Now that I have a job description in place, I can go about creating a work-plan for this  new part-time job. Pray for me that God will be glorified whether I’m working at home or at the hospital. That’s what it’s all about, after all!

What’s My Brand? (Part Two)

Hopefully you read the last post.  Otherwise this one won’t make much sense.  So, if you didn’t we’ll wait while you go back and read it. (Pausing to wait…) You’re back?  Good!  Here we go then. . .

As I have thought about my life, my “brand” I have realized more and more just how blessed my life has been. What factors in my life made me who I am? Is it simply that I have an ESFJ personality on the Myers-Briggs spectrum? (That would be Sanguine-Choleric to those of you more familiar with that terminology.) I don’t believe so. I  thought several times this weekend of the verse in Psalm 139:14 which says, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made. . .” I’m not an accident. What my life-path has made me isn’t just a result of chance. No, indeed. This is the result of God’s direction. God has given me every opportunity that has made my life what it is. He gave me the parents he wanted me to have, all three of them. He gave me a Daddy who exemplified teaching by example. Daddy taught us to choose our actions based on Bible principles. Most importantly he demonstrated this by consistently living his life, day by day making his personal choices based on Biblical principles.

God gave me the opportunities he wanted me to have and took away the things that wouldn’t serve His purposes in my life. He sent me to Nursing School and eventually Bible College for an El Ed degree. He took my cello away after 7th grade so I was forced to learn to play the piano. He gave me the responsibility/opportunity to play a cantata way above my ability in high school, thereby forcing me to develop my musical ability and inciting a love for the piano I just didn’t have. He didn’t give me a husband until I was forty-three leaving me many years to pursue other goals and ministries. It also forced me to draw closer to Him.

Every experience in my life, good or bad, can in retrospect be placed under the umbrella of “The preparing of a servant of the living God.” This causes me to fall on my face and say, as Mary did,“Behold, the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.” Luke 1:38. For a die-hard controller of all that is Miriam’s life, this is a hard lesson to learn and hold on to. Why is it so hard to give over control to the God of the universe? I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that He is trustworthy and consistent. He is my Abba Father, my heavenly Daddy.

So, even the search of a pithy, succinct way to express the essence of Miriam comes down to this — God is using this experience to give me an appreciation for my life path and mold me into a more Christ-like attitude, a complete surrender. May the essence of Miriam include a daily surrender to an Almighty, Unchangeable, All-Knowing, Loving, Holy God.