He Laughed.

by Tricia Prinzi on September 16, 2011

So, I took the plunge and hung a shingle. I now have a private counseling practice. I only have four clients, but still. It’s a start. And every detail of getting started has been painstaking. My nature is to make everything more difficult than it has to be. It is one of my most endearing qualities.

I’ve been boring people with talk of a practice forever, but have been too much of a chicken to give it a go. Then, out of the blue, a dear friend asked me to be a partner in her practice. Since that conversation I have been equally giddy and terrified. I have worked as a school counselor for years, but working privately is very different. And being qualified on paper doesn’t change the fact that I often feel like a fraud. I feel like people are going to find me out. They will see that I really have no idea what I’m doing. I am plagued by self-doubt. Insecurity. Nerves. Bad feelings that make me shut all the lights off and watch sad movies and have pity parties for myself.

And as I sat laboring over the perfect wording for my new website one night, something out the ordinary happened. Something divine, I think. As a rule, I’m not one to “hear a word from the Lord,” let alone share it publicly. I’ve become more of a “live a quiet life” kind of girl. The Bible talks about living a quiet, peaceful life, doing justice, loving mercy and walking humbly with God.

Well, I am now temporarily switching to megaphone mode. I want you to know that I heard from God directly and I know it.

I was sitting there, at midnight, quite tired and discouraged. I was playing those relentless messages over in my head. The ones that say, “You’re going to make mistakes. You’re going to be unprepared. Working so closely with people is messy and confusing, and you can’t handle messes and confusion.” I decided to take a break and skip over to a mindless activity, specifically Facebook, for a few minutes. And I noticed that I had a new friend request. It took me a second to place the name. And then it happened. I promise you, I heard God laugh. Yes, laugh. And then I started to laugh. And cry, at the same time.

The friend request was from a girl I knew for six months, in a different city, 13 years ago. She was the first client I ever worked with. She was first person I ever helped as a brand new, just out of my program, qualified counselor and she had reached out on this very night, when I was feeling most useless. Coincidence? I think not. And as I sat letting the tears and the giggles wash over me, I realized that God was very near and very real. I imagined Him smiling and shaking His Fatherly head and saying in a deep voice, “When will you trust that I made you who you need to be, silly girl?”

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 SD Smith September 16, 2011 at 2:44 pm

Good one, Tricia.

Not to disagree with people in high places, but I’m pretty sure you’re supposed to be writing comedy.

Maybe both?

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2 Leanne September 16, 2011 at 5:41 pm

Love this. Can’t wait to hang out and talk about your new venture…esp. since it’s one I hope to be making in a few years.

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3 Chris Whitler September 16, 2011 at 7:04 pm

I found this because I follow your husband on twitter. But I am crying now after reading as it’s the perfect thing I needed to read today. Thanks for megaphone mode.

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4 tricia September 16, 2011 at 7:17 pm

Sam: I’m going to alternate writing things that make people laugh and cry. It will be intense and confusing. Stay tuned. Leanne: Yes! We’ll compare notes and encourage each other! Chris: Buechner said, “The story of any one of us is, in some measure, the story of us all.” I’m glad it touched you. Be well.

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5 BenjaminAnible September 16, 2011 at 7:20 pm

Thank you for having the courage to go into megaphone-mode. Let no one accuse you of hiding your light under a basket.

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6 Richele Wegman September 16, 2011 at 8:02 pm

Tricia: Congratulations on your endeavor! I remember sitting in my salon, the many conversations we had about your plan someday. I encourage you to rebuke those negative thoughts of failure. You can’t fail if you don’t try. One thing I can say for sure is that the only thing I don’t want to fail at is listening to God and his purpose in my life. I sure would hate to say he’s making a mistake. Have fun, and do what you know and love. You will be excellent, and you will touch and help restore many lives. On a funny note, I sure know a whole lot of messed up people I could send your way. LOL. I pray for prosperity over your practice and that with God you can do all things. God Bless you and your family.

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7 Stacy September 16, 2011 at 9:48 pm

“Why not go out on a limb? That’s where the fruit is.” ~Mark Twain
Reach for the fruit with no fear. You have a gift, you always did. I love you and am proud of you Iris… Stacy

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