I met Kay at a public event and after realizing we originally met 30 years prior, we got to catching up on all that had gone by. We both have active faith but Kay wanted a deeper knowledge about God. We talked about the difference between knowing about God and knowing God in a spiritual relationship. She asked if she could call me once a week and then Covid shut down our world and her income was running low. A widow now, she shared that she needed a job, but who would hire a disabled woman close to retirement age with limited part-time job experience and deceased potential references? The odds were stacked against her and she had a pretty low self-image. I wanted to help Kay, but wasn’t sure how I could. It appeared impossible.
Because of our schedules, contact restrictions and Kay’s challenges job applications via computer were out. With the pandemic even job interviews were no contact. As impossible as it seemed, the more Kay and I talked about her needs and her love for seniors, the more I felt drawn to help her. But how?
Kay and I chatted on the phone several times a week and she expressed that she was a person of faith and believed that God would provide her a job and part of that job hunt was our meeting. She joked that I was like an angel and we laughed at the picture I described of my guardian angel holding her head in her hands in exhaustion. Kay had the faith of a child and inspired me to keep praying for help. After she read a book that I wrote which quoted scripture from an easy to read version, she called me excited, asking if I wrote that page. I explained about various translations of the Bible and her voice was animated with joy as she exclaimed, “I could understand it! You mean there’s a whole a Book out there like that?” Yes, I told her, let’s pray for the right one. The next day, I took a neighbor to a doctor appointment and she asked if we could stop at a resale shop on the way home. There, of course, I found an easy to read version of the Bible.
Kay’s faith was building from that experience and she exclaimed if God will do that, He would find me a job, too!
We thanked God for that answer and talked about the various ways God had helped each of us in the past. What a faith building conversation! She asked if I would continue praying for the job that would allow her to help others and something she could do within her limitations. How could I say no.
Of course, when God asks me to do something my next action is usually to ask God what I can DO? I could go on the computer and look for a job even though she couldn’t.
My eyes glazed over after looking for hours – online applications only, add resume, references…all the usual. Was I praying or whining when I whispered – God help – am I wasting my time? I’m not sure. But… just then a full-page ad popped up. It was for a senior companion and it said apply online OR IN PERSON.
I quickly printed off the 8×11 ad and mailed it to Kay. She called me several days later, her voice elated, to tell me “I got a job and boy do I have a story to tell you! I had the strangest but nicest interview ever,” she said. She explained how she went to the address on the ad and asked the woman there if she took job applications, then handed the woman the ad and said she would like to apply for a job, any job working with seniors.
The woman looked at the ad a few moments, turned the paper over and asked her where she got the ad. Kay admitted she thought she was going to get booted out because the woman typed some in the computer and looked up puzzled before she said, “I have not seen that ad, I did not place it/WE did not place it. But…as long as you are here, tell me about yourself.” Kay told a couple stories about opportunities she had in the past to encourage or help a senior and how fulfilling she found it. She also explained why she could not use a computer.
The lady was quiet a moment and then she said, “You know what, I believe you are just the type of person we are looking for…someone who can bring joy to some lonely seniors. Let’s fill out that application together.” Very patiently, the lady asked Kay each question and then typed Kay’s answers into the computerized application. When they were done she reached behind her as she told K she was confident they could find the right fit for her, and she handed her a company shirt (uniform) and said to wait for their call. They soon called and gave her several small assignments. She is companion for a few seniors, each a few hours a day, and does little household and shopping errands for others who are housebound.
The following week Kay called, her voice escalating with excitement as she reviewed how the seniors have become more joyful and upbeat since she started. She reported her boss said the families of her clients are happy with her work and they are still mystified where that ad came from as no one else saw it, and searching found no such online ads from their company – only the typical listing for hiring agencies saying you must apply online.
I wished I’d kept a copy and started searching while we chatted on the phone. Kay’s laughter interrupted me. “I know what you are doing,” she said, “but you won’t find it. It doesn’t matter if it is there now, anyway,” she continued, “it was there the day and the minute it was needed.”
The impossible happened. Kay finished her story, saying she thanked the woman for the encouragement and the nicest interview ever. The woman smiled and raised her eyebrows when Kay leaned in and whispered I think my guardian angel posted that ad. It was an answer to prayer. “You may be right,” her new boss replied, “you were an answer for us too!”