Be Bold and courageous and Dangerous

WEEKLY(ISH) DEVOTIONAL | words by Mandy Hixon

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly of heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." Matthew 11:28 - 30 (ESV)

I burst onto the New York fashion scene as a frightened 22 year old in the middle of the coldest winter New York had seen in 7 years.  I hurried off the jetway with a fashion magazine tucked under my arm.  The cover story read, Be Bold and Courageous and Dangerous. I, being none of those things, was terrified, but got straight to work among some of the biggest personalities you’re likely to find.
I quickly fell in love with, and married, my dream job. When I wasn’t saving the world, one ikat caftan at a time, I reveled in New York City, with all it’s energy, passion, and anonymity. It was one of the most exciting periods of my life. 
I felt that, with each year at my dream job, I was one step closer to becoming someone. I gained confidence in myself and my abilities – I was finally becoming bold..and courageous.

Then suddenly, the economy turned, and in a single morning, my dreams were crushed. I was fired.
Everyone in my department had seen it coming for months. Our clients were tightening marketing budgets and things had gotten tense. Weeks earlier, as I sat on the subway, I said a prayer. Please take this burden from me. It is too much for me to carry. I can’t bear the thought of losing my job financially or emotionally. I still can’t remember where I got that idea from, but at that moment, I felt as though a weight had lifted from my shoulders. 
The next few weeks got a little lighter. And then one morning, nearly fifteen people smiled at me on my way into work.  I took those smiles as a sign that everything would be OK. God was with me. 
But that was the same morning that I got fired. I walked home - in tears - thinking, I trusted you. I was embarrassed and angry. And scared for my future. But that's the thing about handing our stuff over to God. When we fully give something to God, we can’t have it back. We have to fully hand it over and go along for the ride.
Looking back, this was a test on my journey that was just beginning to unfold. Over the next several years, God began to remove the pieces of me that relied too heavily on the world. Too heavily on my own abilities and strength. God was slowly and painstakingly asking me to lean on Him, rather than myself.  

Since then, I’ve tried to hand God bits and pieces of my life, but He always wants the whole darn thing. And I've found that there’s nothing more courageous, bold or dangerous then putting someone else in control of your life.
Oh yeah, I bet you are wondering what happened after I lost my job?
The HR director called me two days later. She said they had made a mistake and they wanted to hire me back. In fact, they had found a better position for me, but they wouldn’t need me for another month, so I was free to take some time off (ride my bike around Amagansett and eat apple pie) and they would pay me during my time away.  

Faith, WorkMandy Hixon