I have a job again. And I get a paycheck with the name of my church on it! Yesterday, I received my first check and left work early to buy a Nintendo Switch. But I didn’t forget that I need to tithe!
I work at the Deseret Industries in Glendale, Arizona. I stock books, movies, music, electronics, knick-knacks, metal house décor, wicker baskets, plates, cups, kitchen utensils, office supplies, crafts, toys, glassware, and domestic goods. I also answer questions from customers as I work on the sales floor. I wear a shirt and tie (not to mention my Deseret Industries apron over it).
I am so lucky to have this job. It’s the only job I can do right now. My church believes in self-reliance, and they are helping me become more self-reliant.
I recently applied for social security benefits because I’m disabled. But now that Trump is president I don’t think I’m going to get approved. I did get approved for government housing and food stamps but the social security check never came. I’ve been spending a lot of money on a credit card so I need to get a job. For example, I bought the PC that I’m typing this on right now on credit. I won’t lie: I bought some games too. And I spent a heck of a lot of money on food. I’ve maxed out the credit card.
My former Elders Quorum president warned me this would happen. But the good thing is with my job I can afford the minimum payment on my credit. And I even got to buy a Nintendo Switch!
But it hasn’t been all fun and games. My prayer life has been great. But I’ve had a spiritual crisis because I don’t feel like God is talking to me. Working at the DI in Glendale is great because we have team meetings that open and close with a prayer. These are people who have no doubt in their minds that God is listening to them. I am learning from their great faith.
I used to work at the DI in Mesa, Arizona. But my panic attacks kept me from working all my shifts. The medication I’m on now has curbed my panic attacks which is why I felt like asking my new bishop for a referral to work at the DI here in Glendale (I recently moved to Glendale from Chandler). I’ve made some great improvements. I don’t live with my parents anymore. I’m paying bills. I’m learning to manage my food stamp money to buy groceries wisely. And I’m cutting down on my smoking again.
But I’m still not ready to bear my testimony at church yet, though this is the only way I can magnify my priesthood calling. I have less teaching authority than a teacher in the church (I don’t have a home-teaching assignment). I’ve never handed out sacrament like a deacon. I only have memories of being a 17-year-old convert and saying the prayer over the sacrament as a priest. Now, I’m 33 and suffer from meth-induced schizophrenia. I exercise the same priesthood authority that an unmarried woman in the church exercises — bearing my testimony. But I promised God I wouldn’t bear my testimony again until I went at least 90 days without smoking.
I’m so lucky my church owns a thrift shop that will offer me employment. But I can’t stay here forever. I have an employment counselor through my clinic that is helping me find a call-center job. That’s what I really want to do. I just need to develop solid work habits. No one will hire me unless I can prove here at DI that I can work all my shifts, be on time, take breaks only when scheduled, and stay until the end of my shift. I developed some bad habits at the DI in Mesa because of my panic attacks. But my panic attacks are under control now and I’m still leaving work early like I did today to play with my Nintendo Switch.
I’m writing this mostly for myself: I’ve identified a problem and want to fix it. I’m pulling an all-nighter and working from open to close today. Then I can easily fall asleep tonight so I can go to church tomorrow. Besides, I need to make up the hours I missed yesterday.
If you’re reading this, you’re probably from the WordPress ward or one of my friends from church who I gave this blog’s address to. Please pray for me that I will establish reliable work habits so I can get a real job. While I am working, this job is pretty much like welfare. I get paid for very easy work. Easy money. I feel guilty getting paid. But I’ll feel better once I put my tithe in.
Thank you for reading this and caring about me (whoever you may be).