Friday, March 13, 2009

Leah Orcutt/Guest Blogger

I'd like to welcome Leah Orcutt to Selah today. This testimony she shared blessed me so much, and she gave me permission to publish it here. I pray it causes someone to pause, ponder & praise today...

Walk By Faith
by Leah Orcutt

One night.

That is all it took for life to shake me to the core. Now I sit, questions swirling around like a tornado in my brain. Questions of faith, of future, of reality and falsehood. What am I doing? Where am I going?

Does He really favor me?

There. That's the dead-center of the issue. Can I look at my life, and this situation, and truthfully say, "God is good"?

How can this be good? Either I am a total failure, or the entire situation is grossly unfair, or to some degree, both. What the heck is God teaching me in this moment? How can He ever make good from this?

Let me back up and bring you up-to-date.

Week two of working on my own in my first RN job. I have four patients with various complicated illnesses, and a fresh admit (the fifth). She has an array of illnesses that take almost an hour to make sense of, and now the doctor has written a page or two of orders that need to be done like now. In the midst of taking care of all this, I need to check my other patients, do their assessments, and administer all the medications in a timely manner. Oh, and a couple hours later, they add a second admit to the mix, with his batch of new orders. Remember, this is my sixth day of working on my own just out of training. Nearly about to break down and cry, I go to my charge nurse and tell her I am having trouble getting this all done. "Buck up and deal with it. I can't help you," is her response. I do what any normal person would do--call her roommate at 4am and say, "Pray for me!"

At the end of the night, my manager comes to me and puts me on suspension until further notice. A week and a half later, she calls me to tell me that they will be laying me off in the morning. A phone call to the union reverses that process, but now I am on a sort of probation to prove that I can do my job. Under intense scrutiny and having my charge nurses completely betray me and stab me in the back (telling my manager that I pretty much suck as a nurse after telling me that I did a wonderful job), I find myself questioning what I am doing in this place.

Driving around town tonight on various errands, I wonder if I had heard God correctly. Did He really call me to be a nurse? All the trouble I had in nursing school, struggling to pass my most difficult class; having teachers tell me that I should reconsider my career path; curses from my charge nurses that had turned on me--can all these signs point to the fact that I should not continue? Even in this probation period I struggle to finish all the required tasks in a timely manner. What will I do instead of nursing?

More importantly, the questions that run deeper concern my identity. All my life I have fought the lie that I have no worth, that I fail the most important tasks, that God does not truly love me because I can never measure up. Facing the reality of my glaring failure as a nurse, these questions shake me to the core of my faith in Him to make all things work together for good. Certainly He must not favor me, for this is not good.

I rarely listen to the radio, because I hate the commercials. Tonight, however, I do not feel like listening to a CD, so I tune the radio to Spirit 105.3. Jeremy Camp's "Walk By Faith" comes on a few minutes later, and I begin to sing along out of habit. About halfway through I truly listen to the words:

Would I believe you when you would say
Your hand will guide my every way
Will I receive the words You say
Every moment of every day

Well I will walk by faith
Even when I cannot see
Well because this broken road
Prepares Your will for me

Help me to win my endless fears
You've been so faithful for all my years
With one breath You make me new
Your grace covers all I do

Well I'm broken--but I still see Your face
Well You've spoken--pouring Your words of grace

My windshield blurs, but not simply from the pouring Seattle rain. With tears streaming down my cheeks, I sing along: "But I will walk by faith, even when I cannot see."

I cannot see what the future holds. Whatever I face, He promises to walk through it with me. He must have a purpose for this crisis in my life, and someday I will see the results of this breaking.

Tonight I will face my fears, confront the enemy, rebuke the lie that says I cannot do this job. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13). I will trust the Lord, and walk by faith.

One night at a time.


[Author's Note: I passed the probation period, succeeded in doing fairly well as a new nurse, and as soon as God released me, I moved on to the job I love--delivering babies! I would never, ever want to live that time of my life over again, but I can truthfully say that God has used it to refine my character and deepen my faith. That song came in one of the most critical moments to encourage me while in the depths of despair--our God truly is a God of hope!]

Leah loves Jesus Christ with all of her heart! In addition, she reads, writes, hangs out with friends, plays the violin, prays, sings, and delivers babies by night as a nurse in her local hospital. God has radically transformed her life, and she loves encouraging and praying for others to experience His great love. You can find more of her writings at Take Root and Write and

13 friends shared a comment:

Lori said...

That was such an awesome testimony! We all come to a place of doubting the goodness of God at some point in our Christian walk. "God, how are you gonna turn this into good?"

Wow...God IS good!

Oh! and I haven't been here for a while...but I love the new look! Keep encouraging us! God bless:)

Denise said...

Beautiful testimony, thanks for sharing.

a woman found said...

i was really blesed by that. i relate! i remember thos R.N. probation period days... not my favorite either! i'm getting ready to go back after a long hiatus from working as an R.N. and i fear i'm walking right back into the scary "new nurse" days. This really encouraged me to remember to just walk by faith!


Joanne Sher said...

Incredible testimony, Leah - thank you so, SO much for sharing it with us, LauraLee!

Beth in NC said...

What a wonderful testimony! Thank you for sharing it with us! God is so good!


elaine @ peace for the journey said...

How many times have I had to walk by faith and not by sight?! Like Leah, I've had some seasons of a seeming aimless walk. Still and yet, they were my shaping and for my good. I have a few of them, upon reflection, that I'm still scratching my head over, but I'm trusting God that even then, He was growing me.

Thanks, Leah, for sharing your heart.


Angie said...

What a phenomenal testimony! OF FAITH!
Having been in the place of severe doubting myself...when God sends a is as a soothing blanket to an hurting heart.

Thank you for having her here! I was greatly blessed ;)

Toia said...

Wonderful Praise Report!! This is definitely a true testament of walking by faith.

Faith without works is dead!! Thanks for sharing!! Bleassings to you and Leah!!

Darnelle said...

Hi LauraLee,
Just wanted to thank you for your kind comments today at the Cafe'. I hope your Sunday was wonderful!

Josh said...

Wow, Leah. You have shared some of what God has done for you with me, but I never did hear about this testimony. Very powerful stuff! I am very happy that Laura featured this. I feel like I am walking by faith every single day, and truthfully, we all are.

Peter Stone said...

Thanks Leah for such a stiring testimony of one of those soul searching moments that could crush someone and their life's dreams. So touching that in turning to the Lord, He provided a song that ministered so much.

Diana D said...

Wow, this was gripping and powerful. Thanks so much for being vulnerable and sharing this Leah and for posting it LauraLee. God is indeed so good! I'm uplifted today by your words.

Dave Orcutt said...

This is our darling daughter. If we did nothing else, we tried to instill in her a faith in Jesus that could stand the storms of time. No matter how much you love the Lord, there comes a time when your children have to make those choices of faith for themselves. God doesn't have any grandchildren, just adopted children. Romans 8:37-39 The first verse of the hymn The Solid Rock says: "My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus name. Chorus: On Christ the Solid Rock I stand; all other ground is sinking sand."