When I was a kid, my mom had one of those Eastman Kodak 110 cameras with the telephoto lens. You guys remember the telephoto lens. It was the little switch you flipped on top that manually moved a different lens in front of the shutter. The telephoto lens made stuff in the distance look like it filled the viewfinder. I have no idea how that all worked, but I guess it was a primitive version of zoom.
I think my life has been stuck on telephoto for the past few weeks. The fact of the matter is, I can't get a job. I really want to get a job, but--no matter how hard I try--I can't. I've applied and been turned down at Macy*s (gotta love the *), Starbucks, Wal*Mart (there it is again), Target, Domino's and about 40 design firms. Really.
There's nothing like sitting in an interview for a job that pays $8.35 an hour and thinking, "I could DESIGN the building we're sitting in and you're saying I'm not qualified to stock the shelves inside of it?" That's a new level of frustration. It puts you on the dividing line of being humbled and being humiliated. Every day I get to decide which side of the line to jump off on. Some days it's one side; some days the other.
I can't say that I'm above any of the jobs I've applied for. Far better men than I have happily worked a lifetime doing more menial tasks. I guess maybe I've been a little (more than a little) spoiled.
That's where telephoto comes in. Telephoto cuts the big picture out so all you see is one area. If I switch out of that mode and look at real life, everything seems so much better. My wife and kids are healthy and here with me. We have a house to live in. The bills are still being paid on time. We've been blessed by God to be starting a new life and ministry here in Puyallup. We have all kinds of old friends back home and all kinds of new friends here. Food is still being put on the table at our house. Even cookies sometimes.
It's been said that whatever doesn't kill us makes us stronger. I hope this is another one of those things. Even if it's not, God is still good to ask me to live a little weaker.