This is a guest post from Carolyn Chow. She is a recent grad from San Diego State InterVarsity and now officially a professional working woman in the marketing industry. She is a great friend of mine and I have had the privilege of watching her develop the last four years in college. I asked her to share her remarkable story of the first month on the job in LA. She is truly becoming a world changer!
Just last week I had the opportunity to lead someone to faith at work. That is right, in my first month on the job, in a completely new city, God used me right out of college to lead a sister to Christ. I couldn’t be more excited for her and the mission God has me on in the working world.
But let me give you a bit of background first before I launch into the conversion story.
Atheist Party Girl To Self Acknowledged Sinner
I am a recent grad from a wild 4-year ride of transformation, making a hard 180 turn from a cynical, atheist party girl, to a self-acknowledged sinner who has been rocked and forever changed by the truth and grace of Jesus Christ. I was heavily involved in my InterVarsity at San Diego State and was more than open to serving in full time ministry post-college.
But I was shocked when I felt called to work in the crazy, stressful, cutthroat competitive, consumeristic world of advertising. What?! That’s not where Christians go. That isn’t “hardcore”.
So I never thought that God would call me to a place in the advertising world, which has been known to be “evil” with consumerism, manipulation, and profit seeking values. But I have always had a secret crush on marketing communication and I fell even more in love with marketing strategies and the concepts in school. I have had many heart checks to ensure my intentions are pure with my almost weird obsession with all things advertising, but I embraced that who God made me is uniquely me. So, I felt a calling to pursue the marketing gig in this next season to see if the passion continues to develop. And I am realizing more than ever why.
For I believe that God calls you where your passions meet the needs of the world, giving you divine purpose. And when God calls you, He provides.
But whoa, when He talks about the needs of the world, He wasn’t kidding.
Moving to LA
I just moved to LA, one of the largest and most diverse cities in the world with some of the biggest problems in America. I read that LA is known as both America’s First Third World City and the world’s future financial capital city. And I work in Santa Monica, one of LA’s the biggest business centers and materialistic places in the country.
Shockingly, Santa Monica is only 6% churched. They are where God is giving me my unreached people – and working at this firm for about a month, my heart breaks for people that do not know Christ. Already, God has been showing real strongholds and brokenness within the people I have grown to quickly, but truly care about – success driven, fear, competition, job insecurity, stress, becoming workaholics, low self-esteem, divorce, single and loneliness, un-satisfaction in life, alcoholism, domestic abuse, and utter hopelessness.
God Showed Up at Work
In the face of all this darkness, but, like God does, He has been so faithful to me and His quiet promise to trust Him in my move here for this position. Let me give praise to where praise is clearly due.
- First of all, I got a job. Miraculously, God provided a job right out of school in one of my dream agencies of marketing communication. Woot! Looking back at my interviewing crazy season, I can see how God’s hand was all over it for me to get to this dream agency. He had a plan the whole time!
- Within the first two weeks, I met a fellow coworker who is a strong believer. She was praying for someone to come and be a light with her in our agency while I was praying that God would give me a fellow partner. Answered prayer x2! We have become sisters for Christ, giving each other accountability and prayer partners for our work, introducing me to a bigger Santa Monica community, and being intentional with our relationships to bring Jesus to our job. Since then, I have had several spiritual conversations, helping meet two other believers who are starting to be more open with their faith at work. I am so in awe of how much God can go before us to make a way!
- And this past week, I saw that God is doing miracles in the business world of Santa Monica as a new daughter came into the kingdom!
Lucy Comes To Faith
A friend called asking me to meet with this young woman in Santa Monica who was desperately seeking to know who Jesus was. My friend didn’t give me many details, but it was apparent that God was up to something. I met with her on Monday for dinner and I was blown away by how much she was obviously, radically being pursued by the Lord.
Now, lets call her Lucy. She is the dream Santa Monica women. She is extremely intelligent, very beautiful and wildly successful businesswoman in her early thirties. From any world standards she has everything that money could buy – but after getting to know her over a short meal, she has a deep sense that there was something more. She was burdened with what a lot of typical people in business deal with: a hard divorce, an untrusting relationship, shallow friendships based on competition, problems with her visa, and immense stress with her job. She kept expressing her stress and I could see she was desperate, having gone to her traditional Buddhist church, a counselor, even a psychic for answers, but she kept saying that they cannot help her. Then boom, God came and answered prayers.
After her psychic gave her advice to meditate over this crystal, Lucy heard God. That’s right, Lucy… who never knew God, heard a man’s voice telling her, “You are my son. You don’t need that crystal. Trust me; I will take care of everything.” She told me that her mother used to call her son, for in her Chinese culture, that is the ultimate sign of respect for a woman, so she said after she heard that voice that she kept looking for her mother, because she AUDIBLY heard it. She quickly realized that God was speaking to her and He continued to speak to her up until our conversation where I shared the Gospel, where He even told her to, “Trust Carolyn.”
I have been absolutely blown away by how much God makes a way for you in the most unlikely places. I prayed for Lucy, this crazy successful, beautiful business woman in the middle of Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica to accept Jesus and follow Him forever. She instantly looked free from her burdens, realizing that God can truly help her and that He is ultimately in control of her life and now wanting to spread the news of who Jesus is to everyone.
God is working in this crazy world of work in Santa Monica. Even in the glam and the riches, Jesus is clearing seeking these people, and some are so desperate for Him. So where are your unreached people? Is it across the world? Or maybe it’s where your heart already is.