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I am getting used to my new routine. Everyday, I overdress in a blue suit and tie with smart slip-on shoes. You think I’m prepped to work at the London Stock Exchange, but really I am based in ICT juggling two roles, where I train staff in Microsoft Office and I also provide 1st and 2nd level technical support… and I can now fix office kettles! Nonetheless, I genuinely look forward to going to work and catching the early bus simply to clock flexi time for the day, which is also a new experience for me. Of course, I say that now…

…but seriously, I think it’s the nature of the third sector that is helping me to develop new confidence to return to a healthy working mindset and attitude. And despite what I may think otherwise, I know the LORD is (and has been) helping me through with this new season, even before finding this blessing of a post. Either way, I can’t settle too comfortably, as I am contracted for one year. However, there is a possibility that I could receive an extension. It really depends if they have the budget, but more so, it depends on where the LORD wants me to be. I can honestly say, I’m not worried!

I am learning so much on the job because I am part of an incredibly small team of a major charity organisation in the care sector. I am encouraged to experiment and take lead across a wide range of projects and tasks, which is something I find of a privilege and a real benefit to learn the ropes and infrastructure of ICT and training as a whole. And the cool part of the job is that my role is very practical and hands-on, which means I get to converse with colleagues from other departments, which is what I enjoy the most. I said before and I’ll say it again, but I enjoy forming working relationships with colleagues and senior management. I enjoy working with people, even though I consider myself to be an introvert at heart, though I can wear my extrovert hat from time to time.

I commute by public transport, so I am saving a fortune. I only pay £96, which gives me unlimited bus travel every 10-weeks. It would be a different story if I purchased a chitty-chitty bang-bang. Unfortunately, I only have the ideal time at the weekend to catch up on reading, studying or research. And I literally have books that is piling high to touching the ceiling. I am often tired from the 3-hour daily commute, but at least I can make substantial savings from the money that I am earning.

Above all, my Spirit is overwhelmed with joy at the daily pastoral opportunities to listen to colleagues. Though, I need to discern whether my colleagues are actually wanting human ears to listen to them, or whether they are simply talking to themselves out loud… and often is the case, folk are lonely and need a bit of social engagement every now and again.

Nonetheless, I am simply in awe of God’s provision and perfect timing. Now that “Phase 1” has been achieved with regards to securing imminent and paid work, I am sifting through my available time to focus on this Kingom-focused vision. Better late than never I guess. Hence, I have been curbing my online habits and distractions and trying to claw back time.

Although, I am delighted to have ticked-the-box to certain areas of relevance and experience (including stuff outside of work), I can now focus my time and return to revising this crucial plan of action. By the time I formally rewrite this plan and find a Harry Potter wand to formally make sense of the financials, I will have saved some money to one side should I need to consult a lawyer for legal expertise, especially when I want to be 100% confident of the best start-up formation. I have already saved a good amount from last months pay. However, when I received my first pay cheque, I self-indulged in pure essentials, mainly clothes and electronics. So yeah, memory cards for gadgets, a new SSD hard drive for my 2011 MacBook Pro laptop, new trainers, nice new working shirts and casual shirts. Nothing fancy.

The bit that I am dreading is dipping serious money to invest in credible market research (a mere PDF document), which costs an arm and a leg. And since this Kingdom-focuses vision is two-fold, I will need to secure two divisions of market research. So, I could potentially be paying up to or over £3,000 just to make a business plan look convincing with real values and current trends. I’d rather buy something nice for myself like go on holiday that only lasts a couple of weeks, or buy a new digital SLR camera or upgrade my PC, but (a) I won’t have time to toy around; (2) I want this proposal to attract serious attention, knowing that I’ll be investing my own money as such (even though you and I know, it’s God’s money and His blessings). But still, we always want to use God’s money for ourselves.

The main challenge for me is that I need to be consistent in listening to God’s voice, and draw a fine line between God’s discernment and one’s gut reaction.

Despite my return to full-time employment, I am not allowing my heart to go over my head in whimsical thought, because I know this year will be a year of much preparation, refinement, expectation and personal renewal. I have kept my head on top of my shoulders (so far!). Of course, this Kingdom-focused vision still excites me, despite the realities of life and the daily reminder to wait in the LORD. And yes, I still need a formal team, which no longer annoys my brain cells, even though it can easily determine credibility in the minds of investors. If it’s meant to be, then great. If not, I am sure the LORD will allow me to connect with others down the road. The only concern regarding the latter is trusting someone unfamiliar. I need a team who will go out to care for others first, otherwise this vision is going to blow up in a selfish and prideful way, which ironically is what I addressed as a business risk.

In the meantime, I may invest in a further evening course and pursue a public speaking class. I want to learn how to breathe effectively, be aware of my own body language, and speak informatively and clearly. I will technically cover this as part of my titular role at my job, but still, there is no harm to better equip oneself.

The hard-hitting reality is that this Kingdom-focused vision isn’t a silly little happy-clappy venture, because in a nutshell, it seeks to change the lives of real people. Because of this pivotal reason, I don’t want, but *NEED* to team with like-minded people who have nothing to lose, are not bothered with worldly reputations, and wish to seek first the Kingdom of God, especially when the LORD – by His incredible grace – has given us time for us born-again believers to share His love and resources with others.

Otherwise… fine, let us “settle down” and pursue “regular” lives of complacency and selfishness, and let others reach out through the ways of the world instead, while we desire a comfortable living.

~Richard