Going for her noble profession — Part III

 

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This is part 3 in the short story, Going For Her Noble Profession.

Cynthia is unsatisfied being a nurse; she wishes to quit  her job and to do something she enjoys, but she’s scared of the possible outcome on her relationship with her boyfriend, Frank, the love of her life who always wanted a nurse for a wife.

Read part I and 2

Going for her noble profession — part I

Going for her noble profession — part II

 

Cynthia left the pastor’s office in a lighter mood. Even though she still doubted her convictions, she knew what decision her heart longed for. She would give it some time, while she continued in prayer and counseling.

As she descended the lonely path behind the church building, she silently prayed. “Lord, I find it easier taking the risk of failure than enduring the dissatisfaction of my present job. This is not the life I want to live when I’m thirty, forty or fifty. Lord, you know the sincerity of my heart. You know exactly how much I’ve tried to love where I am, yet the dissatisfaction grows daily. I actually dread going to work and I’m happy when the day is over. I’d do it for you if you want me to continue there, but I feel like this is not where you want me to be.

“Father, I’m also scared. Quitting a job is not an easy decision, especially when people who love you and whom you love think you are making a mistake. Their concern is genuine. I wish Frank will understand but I also fear he may not.”

When she reached her place, she went straight to lie on the bed. Imaginations play a great role in decision making, for it is with the power of this God-given tool that we can anticipate the consequences of our actions and evaluate our readiness to face them. When she visualized herself quitting her job, the imagined consequences of the decision were scary: Frank walked away, her parents got angry and turned their backs on her, friends thought she was crazy…and finally, she failed in her preferred venture.

Cynthia’s heart felt heavy. She wasn’t sure she was ready for such an adventure. Not until she imagined the alternative. She saw herself in her present job at age thirty five, a totally dispirited employee. That was scarier.

“Lord, this was never my choice,” she sobbed. “It was my parents’ counsel. Please, let me give change a try. If I fail, I will learn my lessons, plus I can always retract my steps. I’d still be a qualified nurse.”

It seemed like she could see God nodding to that arrangement. The doubts and heaviness in her heart began to give way as she believed change was the right thing to go for. There and then she mentally made the decision. Fear of the criticisms of those who mattered most to her would cause a delay in its implementation, but she was going to do it one day or another.

Getting up from bed, she went to a local grocery where she got herself treated to some ice cream and biscuits, happiness and joy radiating her entire being.

———————————————————————

Two weeks later, Cynthia was in Pastor Wills’ office again. The visibly happy and excited young woman spared no details in narrating to the pastor what she had arrived at and how the constant frustration and dissatisfaction had disappeared even before the final decision had been taken.

The Reverend let her talk out her mind; then he proceeded to asking her pertinent questions.

“What about Frank?”

“Pastor, I’m still praying God to touch his heart to see with me.”

“What if he doesn’t see with you?”

Cynthia broke the knuckles on her fingers, even though her face expressed no sadness. After a long silence, she answered. “Pastor, I’ve been thinking. If tomorrow while I’m married to Frank, I’m frustrated in my job – which is likely to happen – I would tend to direct the frustration at him. Because I would feel like if it wasn’t for him, I’d have made a change. Being with him and remaining in my present job will be difficult. Quitting and losing him will also be difficult. I know which option to choose, but I’m not so bold to verbalize it. I’m like, ‘what’s in a particular career option, anyway? Does he want a wife or a nurse?’”

Pastor Wills smiled; he was used to counselees’ dilemmas. Without offering his assistance to help her make a choice between the mentioned options, he proceeded to the next question. “What about your parents?”

“Pastor, I love my parents, but for God’s sake, I’m a grown up! I’ve lived on my own for four years now. I know they will be disappointed, but I’m no longer dependent on them for sustenance. It hurts to know they aren’t proud of my choice, but I have to wake up to the fact that this is my life. I’m the one facing the frustration and dissatisfaction at my job, not my parents. I really feel like this is what God wants me to be.”

The pastor’s next question was not something Cynthia’s imagination hadn’t anticipated. “Are you really ready to face the challenges of venturing into new horizons?”

“Yes!” was the immediate reply that came. “To me, that’s easier to handle than remaining where I am.”

“Okay, Cindy. I’ll give you a DVD teaching series from a very trusted friend. You go watch and after that whatever decision you make, go for it. New horizons are always scary because we do not know exactly what might happen, but to experience more of God you may just need to get out of the boat and walk on the waters by faith, looking up to the Lord and following his guidance.”

———————————————————–

 “How are you?”

Cynthia would have given the casual, ‘I’m fine’ but the thought immediately came to her mind to seize the opportunity to tell Frank exactly how she was. It was a month after the day she took the decision against indecision.

“More dissatisfied in my job,” she replied, looking away from him.

A painful silence followed. One, because Frank hadn’t expected that kind of answer, and two, because he wasn’t sure what satisfactory comment to make about her complaint. Had he not done his best to convince her she was in the right place? In an enviable profession? A noble profession? But here she was, talking of more dissatisfaction.

Cynthia broke the silence, “I already talked with Pastor Wills, seeking his counsel. You know, it’s hard not to doubt oneself when you are considering major changes such as quitting a job. I don’t just want to be a fanatic. So I’ve been praying and asking God for wisdom and help.

“There’s been this growing dissatisfaction all these years; I don’t see it going away anytime. I keep asking myself if this is how it’s gonna be for the rest of my life. One is not growing any younger; if there are decisions to make, the earlier the better. Sometimes I’m confused, other times, I wished I could just make the decision and damn the consequences.

“I was just thinking that the next vacation could be a no-return time and…”

She went on talking and talking, trying to prevent a possible awful silence from ensuing, and also seeking to give him as much justification for her decision as to make him have nothing more to say to the contrary.

But you can only say as much; she finally stopped talking.

Seated by her side, Frank fixed his stare on his black-polished shoes, a sign he was in deep thought. Cynthia’s heart was pounding, the same time a tiny part of her mind was regretting the decision.

“It’s okay,” Frank finally said. “You shouldn’t be in a job you don’t like. You can’t live like that for the rest of your life.”

And? Won’t you say more? There was one more thing she desperately wanted to hear.

After a long silence he spoke again, “If Decorative Arts is what God wants you to do, I encourage you to go for it. Do what you find satisfaction and fulfillment in. We can’t always think things should be done the way our logic understands, right?”

Not yet right. I haven’t heard what you think about our relationship.

Probably, he was saying it, but Cynthia wanted speech that left no room for doubts and varied interpretations.

She decided to dismiss the doubts. “What becomes of our relationship then?”

Frank was shocked to the core. He had not expected she would think it possible that he could let her go because of a change in career path. He had not understood how his desire to marry a nurse had so much affected the particular nurse he had chosen to be with.

But before he could utter a word in reply, Cynthia was excited for the look of surprise on his face – it was all she needed to rest her anxious heart.

“Cindy, I love you,” he said, “and yes, I always wanted a nurse, but I love you enough to be happy with your happiness. I think I need to have a reshaping of my desires as to the kind of profession I want my wife in. After all, it’s you I want, not your profession.”

She wanted to jump on his neck, but his mouth gestures indicated he still had more to say.

“I’m taking you out tomorrow.”

She understood exactly what he meant. He had been planning for it for some time now.

——————————————————————

Years later, a certain Cindy Frank stood at the entrance of her Decorative Arts shop one afternoon, amazed and feeling fulfilled. She had just closed for the day after a wonderful work day. Besides regular normal clients, a local NGO involved in the rehabilitation of destitute single mothers had contracted her to help train some of the women, seven in all. It was a golden opportunity to be part of the recovery process for the women, all of whom had had very traumatic experiences, which made many among them open to the gospel.

The Good News flowed so freely from her lips and genuinely from her heart. It was no longer an exercise done to add more value and reason to a job she hated.

Cynthia had found her place of fulfillment; her noble profession. She was grateful to the Lord for the way he had caused things to turn out for her. Almost stress-free.  It was unlike other people’s success stories where the challenges were much more difficult than hers. Yet, she still told herself that finding fulfillment is worth the challenges, no matter the level of difficulty; and when God truly leads, success is inevitable even after a long period of apparent limbo.

And there remained yet another wonderful advantage to being at the place her heart had longed for. She couldn’t wait to have the active girl in her tummy come to the world. Great was the joy of knowing she would happily take care of the little lily herself, without the need for a nanny to fill her absent hours. It would be one of her much anticipated joys of motherhood.

She was truly amazed, silently thanking the Lord as she walked away.

Janet Bengan

Fiction for Teaching, Inspiration and Entertainment.

Fiction for Teaching, Inspiration and Entertainment.

Going for her noble profession — Part II

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This is part 2 in the short series, Going for her noble profession.

Cynthia is unsatisfied being a nurse; she wishes to quit  her job and to do something she enjoys, but she’s scared of the possible outcome on her relationship with her boyfriend, Frank, the love of her life who always wanted a nurse for a wife.

Read part 1 HERE

Three weeks later, after much praying, much contemplation, much confusion, and fear too, Cynthia went to see her pastor. She didn’t plan to become emotional, but a tear or two fell off her eyes, as she narrated to the Reverend her longstanding lack of job satisfaction and a desire to effect a change in career path.

His plain theological face expression while he listened to her wailing voice, made her heart begin to fail for fear that he would tell her to stop being stupid and to be grateful to God for a job many were scrambling to have. To be grateful to God for not having had the opportunity to experience the sting of joblessness in an economy where unemployment and underemployment were more normal than the contrary.

The green cloth hanging on the wall, to the left of the pastor’s desk, bore an inscription that made Cynthia’s heart the more miserable.

I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

An advice she dreaded being given, again, for she had personally taken it up herself many times and it never did seem to give her the consolation her heart needed. Contentment, someone had advised, was what she needed, plus a consideration of the well-known quote, ‘the end justifies the means’, which in Cynthia’s case was translated, ‘if the job helps meet your life’s needs, there’s no need for a change.’ For to get food, raiment and shelter, isn’t that the reason why we work after all? Should the type of job therefore matter if it meets the objective for working?

Cynthia had felt bad getting the insinuation, which basically said that financial advancement is the only rational reason for a change of job.

Pastor Wills’ long silence after Cynthia stopped talking was to a purpose which the worried young woman immediately judged and concluded that her coming to seek his counsel had been in vain. That she had just given one more mind the opportunity to realize – and possibly criticize her for – her failure to appreciate the worth of what she had in hand. And that if she let it go, inevitable would be her regret in the future, for the saying must come true: you don’t know the value of what you have until you lose it.

But she had misconstrued his silence. Rev. Wills was a very objective man, not prone to giving hasty answers, especially in such sensitive issues. You can’t just tell a young woman who comes into your office asking for counsel to go quite her job. Not if you are supposed to be a caring and careful spiritual leader. Not when the distressed look on the counselee’s face says she would take every word from your mouth as gospel truth.

Cynthia’s desperate wish for an answer was not going to move the man of God. He took his time to properly comprehend the situation and know what answer to give.

He finally said, “Cindy, I understand”, to which she replied with a weighty heave of her chest and a faint smile on her face.

“Pastor,” she immediately said, having received enough motivation from his reassurance, “working in the hospital and coming in contact with people who have various kinds of problems, I usually find opportune moments to introduce them to the Savior. When people ache, they easily give a listening ear to spiritual issues.

“My fear is really that if I quit, I may lose such opportunities and find myself in environments where I’m not truly helping people as far as their eternal destinies are concerned. I want to quit but I’m uncomfortable with that thought.”

“Cindy,” Pastor Wills replied, “your concern is genuine and understandable. What I’d say is that sometimes our wisdom is not godly. What we think is not help may be only from our own perspective. Let me tell you a story about one of my friends and former colleague in ministry.

“Brother Edward is a fervent servant of our Lord. When he got born-again, immediately in his heart was born the desire to serve God with all his heart. He soon enrolled into the Bible School – he was my classmate – where he spent four years training for ministry. When we graduated, he was called to the pastorate of a good church, where he spent a few years.

“Then one day, I got a call from him. He told me he was quitting ministry to return to the business world. My first reaction was to believe that the challenges of ministry were more than he could bear. But he replied that he had found out God never called him into the ministry, it was his interpretation of serving God that had led him to take the decision to go into ministry.

“Not a few people saw his decision wrongly. Some considered it a carnal step, you know, abandoning ministry for business. Some said he had thought to find treasure in ministry, which he had not found, and so was going back to the world to make money.

“But Brother Edward was so sure God had opened his eyes to what he should have been doing that he ignored the misunderstandings of others and quit the ministry. He rebuilt his business and got it going.

“Cindy, do you know what? Brother Edward is encountering people in the business world he never would have encountered otherwise. His being a businessman has not stopped him from preaching the gospel and leading others to the Lord. Some of these converts are becoming ministers, others are finding God’s purposes for their lives; others are finding simple joy and peace in life, some are having their marriages improved and restored. And you know what, all of that is worth the decision he took.”

Cynthia nodded in agreement, most of her fears now gone.

Pastor Wills continued, “One example that stands out conspicuous to me is one businessman, Brother Edward’s colleague. This man is rich but he was also laden with lots of problems, inner frustration and all the turmoil that accompanies a life out of the Lord Jesus Christ. The man was even considering suicide when his and Brother Edward’s paths crossed. He was led to the Savior, got so happy and overjoyed with God’s amazing grace upon his life that he dedicated his life to the sponsorship of evangelistic outreaches. Our church recently benefitted from his largesse.

“Cindy, do you know what? the fruit of that man’s work is also being credited to Brother Edward’s account.”

The encouragement Cynthia had received by now was overflowing, except for one last worry.

“Pastor, as I told you, I do not want to lose Frank. I love him dearly, but he’s always wanted a nurse for a wife.”

“Cindy, I advise you to pray and know what the Lord would have you do. Then you do it and let him handle the rest.”

“Even if it means the end of my relationship with Frank?”

“Yes. But don’t conclude yet; I know your fear, but trust God. Remember you can count on me anytime you need help.”

“Thank you, pastor.”

Story continues Going for her noble profession — Part III

Janet Bengan
Fiction for Teaching, Inspiration and Entertainment

Fimba and the shoe shop (A parable)

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A PARABLE FOR SINGLE GUYS AND LADIES.

Fimba, forsaken by sleep one Saturday night, searched for something to read for distraction. He stumbled on AMNON GETS MARRIED by Jane Aimee. He read the story right up to Amnon’s conversation with pastor Leonard in the church office, before passing out in sleep. And that’s all he read from the story.

The next morning during praise and worship in church, Fimba suddenly remembered the illustration in the novel about trying a pair of shoes before buying them, and if they don’t fit, keep them back on the shelf and keep trying others.

A cunning smile crossed his face. After service, he chose his first shoe to try out: her name was Linda. The shoe didn’t fit.

Every month for a year or more, Fimba tried a new shoe from the diversity of the congregational shoe shop: Juliet, Brenda, Janet, Cassandra etc. And in every circumstance there was always a reason why the shoe didn’t seem to fit. For example:

“I’m not really into her; she’s too short; she’s not well educated; we don’t look good together; her mother is fat! She doesn’t know how to cat-walk; she doesn’t feel my swag; she doesn’t have good fashion taste; Oh, look at that new shoe that just arrived!”

And he would tactfully return the “inconvenient” shoe to the shelf, or as in the case of Suzy, even propose it to another potential buyer.

Fimba’s luck ran out when he tried the clean, calm, dark, tall and slim, cat-walking shoe known as Rosalina.

Initially it was a heaven-made perfect fit. People admired him each time he wore the shoe to church and other public gatherings.

But then again… Fimba thought he could cook up some flimsy excuse to return the shoe to the shop and look for another fitting shoe. But unknown to him, on the sole of the shoe was written the inscription: ‘NO TRY-OUT. IF YOU TAKE ME, YOU MUST BUY ME’.

Every gymnastic to get the shoe off his feet and back to the shelf proved abortive. The shoe stuck to Fimba’s foot like Superglue Cent-Dix© on a surface of paper. If it must be returned to the shelf, it would do so at the cost of the leg.

The buyer was pathetic but the owner of the shoe readily packaged the parcel and handed it out.

Months later, Fimba came complaining to the sales boy at the shop.

‘Men, that shoe hurts like nothing I’ve ever experienced’. The sales boy replied ‘Patience, man. With just a little endurance and hard work it will finally fit. Don’t be too quick to complain or throw away your shoe.’

Fimba cried, ‘By the time the shoe can fit I will be walking on crutches or on a wheelchair, for right now my toenails have come out and the skin on my toes is blistering.’

‘Don’t worry’, the sales boy assured Fimba. ‘Endure for a little while. I think you’ll need copies of my Master’s books such as “DON’T THROW AWAY YOUR SHOE YET!” and “HOW TO GET HURTING SHOES TO FIT”. Try the techniques outlined therein. I wish you the best.’

With a sigh, Fimba paid and collected the books. He left the shop sad.

Let him that has ears hear!

Janet Bengan

Fiction for Teaching, Inspiration and Entertainment.

Going for her noble profession — Part I

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Cynthia is unsatisfied being a nurse; she wishes to quit  her job and to do something she enjoys, but she’s scared of the possible outcome on her relationship with her boyfriend, Frank, the love of her life who always wanted a nurse for a wife.


 

The terrified mother watched with eager attention but somewhat soothed anxiety as the nurse, with the same dexterity that had broken the vial and sucked up the liquid drug into the syringe, carefully took off the luer lock plug and slowly pushed the drug into the child’s body, the lad being held down by his father.

In the twinkle of an eye, the status epilepticus attack was over as the boy sank into calm sleep.

After staying long enough to make sure he was completely calm, Cynthia took her tray and was heading back to the nurses’ station, when the relieved mother grabbed her arm and thanked her profusely for coming to her son’s aid.

“Ma’am,” Cynthia replied. “It’s my job. Rather thank God, he’s the one that spares lives.”
“Thank you, all the same,” the woman insisted. “You were careful. I have watched some other nurses and they are not as careful as you are.”

Cynthia returned to the nurses’ station, searched for the child’s file and documented what had happened and the intervention she had done.

The clock struck 2 a.m. She decided to go through the ward to see if every other child was calm. When nothing needed her attention, she returned to her seat.

Laughter came from the dressing room opposite the nurses’ station; Vera had been sitting there since 11 p.m., chatting with someone on the phone.

Cynthia refused to harbor resentment this time around – it was to no gainful use. She had objected to being paired with the negligent nurse – like many of her other colleagues – for the night shift, because instead of two nurses sharing the work, one usually took up most of the responsibility while the other spent the majority of the time locked up in the dressing room.

Her colleagues had complained and complained, but no one understood why the matron wouldn’t take drastic measures against Vera’s avoidance of duty, especially during the night shifts. During the day, when the supervisor’s eyes were on her, the lazy nurse was sure to be actively present on duty.

Cynthia sighed and leaned her head on the wall; it was time to give a little more attention to the pondering of her heart, thoughts which recently had become more and more audible.

She sighed for the second time, wishing that for once she could make a firm decision and follow it through. The mother who had just thanked her for saving her child’s life was one of those reasons the decision about her job was so hard to take.

How could she say she was not satisfied being a nurse when such commendation for her work and dedication abounded? For the four years of her working experience in the suburban health facility, the Nurse of the Year Award had alternated between her and one other male nurse, each receiving the award twice, and being a runner up twice.

What would she then say to her colleagues was the source of her wishing to make career path changes?

She sighed again. More disturbing than the opinion of her colleagues was that of her parents and…yes, Frank.

The day she had graduated from college, Daddy was the happiest man. He told one of his friends that he was very proud of his daughter because she had chosen as career a noble profession.

But Cynthia was aware that she had not really chosen, but had been rather counseled to choose that path, because it was a noble profession, and also much more importantly, because gainful employment after school was as sure as death after life on earth.

Being a Christian, she was meticulous in the discharge of her job description, reason why commendation was common place. But the commendations – and comfortable paycheck too – notwithstanding, she couldn’t fail to notice that all things being equal, her heart would love a change and her attention would be given to something else. Not even the prospect of more comfortable paychecks from beckoning opportunities in bigger facilities in the nearby city could satisfy the longings of her heart.

But her dream profession was very distant from her present field, so lacking in similarities, that sometimes she winced and felt ashamed at the thought that she could think of abandoning a noble profession for such a career.

She had tried to love Nursing, justifying to her heart that it was a noble profession; it also accorded her the opportunity to share the gospel – and she had seen a few people come to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

How does one leave such a profession for one not so noble? She wondered. What would people think of me? Unspiritual? Crazy?

And what would Frank think? No, what would he do about their relationship should she muster enough courage to withstand her colleagues’ and parents’ criticisms and objections. At twenty three she was on her own – her parents may object, but as long as her sustenance didn’t come from them, their objection was not a very major obstacle.

Frank had told her he always desired his wife to work in the hospital milieu, whether as a medical doctor, a nurse or paramedic. He had confessed that each time he saw her in white, it was a wonderful pleasure – she looked more beautiful…and his love for her shot through the roof.

Cynthia had once asked him if that was the only reason why he was interested in her. His reply was in the negative, but she believed he gave the impression that her being a nurse scored greatly in his decision to date her.

Recently, he had begun making statements that said he would soon give her the engagement ring and the wedding would be around the corner. Cynthia was excited, but afraid. Excited because she loved him dearly, and afraid for a future where she might not be able to make a change because then she would have a husband’s opinion and decision to submit to.

She wished he could be of the type that wants stay-at-home wives; then she would happily quit her job and do nothing officially classified as a profession. How that sounded so appealing: staying at home and doing nothing was better than being forever stuck in a job she hated.

Frank was not of that type; he not only wanted a working wife, but had a choice in the kind of profession he wanted his would-be wife in: a medic or other healthcare professional

No one would understand the terrible dilemma Cynthia faced. A cursory look at her problem, if truly admitted to be a problem, could result in a casual solution, ‘just do what what makes you happy, to hell with Frank!‘ or ‘You’re not getting any younger, get married and be‘. But Cynthia wished to make changes to her career with the same intensity of desire that wanted to see Frank become her husband.

“Dear Lord, please help me,” she prayed.

At past 3 a.m., another mother came to the nurses’ station to inform Cynthia that her child’s infusion bag was empty and needed replacement. The nurse immediately took a full bag from the cupboard and followed the woman.

After replacing the infusion, she came back to the station. Vera was still giggling and laughing in the dressing room. Cynthia decided she had had enough; she confronted her colleague.

“Gee!” Vera shouted, with a a loud shallowness. “Is this how the time had flown? I’m so sorry, Cindy, I didn’t just take note. Marian is a great talker, we…”

“Go take up your responsibilities and save me the explanation,” Cynthia said.
“What is there to be done?” Vera asked, plugging the charger of her phone into a socket on the wall

Cynthia sighed. “Prepare for the 4 a.m medications.”
“But, Cindy, is that something you can’t do? Just how many children have medications for 4 a.m.?”

Vera then noticed Cynthia’s displeasure, and pleaded, “Please, let me just finish off this important message I was sending. Please. Just a sec.”

“I hope,” Cynthia said, “you won’t find fault with me when again I inform the Matron tomorrow about your conduct during working hours. For God’s sake, you’ve been on your phone for more than fours hours! A child could have died, and you wouldn’t know.”

Vera sighed and went out to the nurses’ station, followed by Cynthia.
“Vera, when you don’t do your job, you place a burden on others. It shouldn’t get you annoyed when they complain. Besides, you are being paid for the job.”

“Meager pay. Peanut money. If you call that  pay, I’d soon call the Matron an excellent administrator. My dear, that salary hardly goes for ten days after pay day.”

“But you accepted it, right? If you are unhappy with the remuneration here, go find a better place, and stop receiving payment for work not done. The city isn’t far.”
“It’s enough! What the…!”

The last exclamation with an expletive was not directed at Cynthia, but at the scene on Vera’s hand: one of her long fake fingernails had just torn the glove she was trying to put on.

Cynthia felt the urge irresistible: “If you kept your nails at the recommended length for nurses, you wouldn’t have had that happen.”
“To hell with all that nonsense. Think I should lose my taste of beauty just because I took some oath?”

“Vera, you can do your nails during vacation,” Cynthia refused to stay quiet. “You know the profession and the administration here frowns terribly at artificial and polished nails.”
“They can’t stop me from living my life,” Vera said, going for another glove.

Cynthia sighed and returned to her seat, from where she watched her colleague preparing the medication tray while muttering and getting angry with the tray and the medications.

It then struck Cynthia; the dissatisfied nurse realized she may one day reach a stage where she felt her job was taking away her true life from her; and then she might, like Vera, resent the rules and regulations of a profession and yet remain in it for the sake of a guaranteed paycheck at the end of the month.

She wanted change; she needed change. But what about Frank? What if he objected?

Janet Bengan
Fiction for Teaching, Inspiration and Entertainment

Story continues Going for her noble profession — part II

The Dancing Clay Vessel

 

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One day, Huldah the Prophetess went down to the Potter’s house and found him busy at his wheel. He was remaking a vessel out of a lump of clay.

The vessel wouldn’t stay still on the wheel, but kept letting out deafening screams with agitations; and every now and then it would get spoiled in the hands of its maker.

The prophetess was curious to know why the workman wouldn’t just thrust the stubborn, ugly earthen material out through the window. She asked him why he was patient with a vessel that didn’t want to be made whole.

He replied, “Funny thing is it believes it is ready and should be joined to the finished vessels in the shop. If it stays quiet it would soon be made, but it wants to get over the process in no time, and that cannot be. I should give up on it but not so soon”.

Time passed and the woman of God happened to pass that way again. She went into the house of the Potter to offer her salutations.

There he was, at his wheel, working on a lump of clay. There was a beautiful vessel adjacent to the wheel,dancing intensely. Colors of the rainbow ran round its rim.

Huldah was amazed and impressed. “I didn’t know your vessels dance,” she said.

The potter with a smile on his face, looked at the dancing vessel, and replied, “O they do. Once they come out so beautiful’.

“But why is it not on the shelf in the shop?” Asked the prophetess.

“Ah!” replied the potter, ‘It has begged to stay a little longer at the workshop so it could tell the other vessels to stay still on the wheel and be made faster by the gentle hand of the Potter. You remember it, don’t you?”

The prophetess realized from the question that it should be the lump of clay she saw being worked on the last time. She was gob smacked.

Leaving the potter’s house she proclaimed throughout the streets:

“Behold, as the clay in the hands of the potter so are you in the hands of the Lord (Jeremiah 18:6)
Many times you think you are ready for use but the Master judges differently.
As the refiner knows when the silver is done (Malachi 3:3), so the Master knows when you are usable.

Would you stay on the wheel as he moulds you?
Would you stay in the refinery as he purges you?

Or would you complain, agitate and come out premature?

If you would stay still and let Him work on you,
If you’d not fuss and fume and agitate
You’d come out like the beautiful dancing clay vessel, purified, fit and ready for the Master’s use” (2 Timothy 2:21).

Author’s notes

We are like clay in the Potter’s hands. As we yield to his dealings in and with us, he moulds into the vessel he wants us to be.

Hebrews 12:11 KJV

Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.

Psalm 119:73 KJV

Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments.

Janet Bengan
Fiction for Teaching, Inspiration and Entertainment