II started my incredible journey with the Altar’D State five years ago. It began at a point in my life where I was very unsettled in my spirit, knowing that God was calling me to do something but not yet knowing what that calling was. I had recently graduated college. Managed a small chain boutique store in my hometown. Owned my own home. It was me and my dog living the dream from the outside looking in. But something in my heart was desperately missing.
I spent months in complete turmoil. I would cry for hours- praying and seeking God for an answer to what it was he was calling me to do- my chest feeling like it was going to implode any second from the weight of something I couldn’t see or understand. But six months came and went… and I was still miserable. Then one morning, like a cloud splitting in the sky, I woke up and two words immediately came to my mind. So strong that it was as if someone had said them out loud to me. Altar’D State.
But what did that even mean? At the time, those two words made zero sense to me. There were no Altar’D State store locations located in my home state, let alone where I lived. And I had only ever even been to an Altar’D State store once in my entire life- my best friend had taken me to one when I was visiting her in Virginia- but even that had been years ago. But those two words stuck. They wouldn’t go away. And they were beyond my mind now, and weighing heavily on my heart. So I followed the tug I felt in my spirit, went to their website, and started looking though their open job requisitions.
Much to my excitement (and surprise) I found there was an open position for store manager in the store that I had visited those years ago with my best friend. Live next door to my bestie? Sign me up! But then there was that tug again. It wasn’t the one. And I knew it. So I kept searching. Another two months came and went. I would check online every day, and every time I would ask the Lord, “Is this the one?” But the answer kept coming back… “Nope.”
I was discouraged. But much like the morning that started me on this path, I went through (my now daily routine) of going through Altar’D State’s open positions page, and I came across a new open position. One for assistant store manager in Lexington, KY. Boom. It stuck. I thought to myself, “No way, Lord. I don’t know anybody in that town. And that’s not the position that I’m qualified for. I don’t want to go there.” But God doesn’t always call the qualified (or even the arrogant over-qualified). He qualifies the called.
So, I applied the next day. I was two and half hours’ drive from that store location, so I didn’t think they would even look twice at my application. But three days later I got the call. So I drove (well, my Dad drove because I was a nervous wreck), to Lexington. Interviewed. And two weeks later I was quitting my job of six years, putting a “For Sale” sign in my front yard, and driving a U-Haul toward the big fat question mark called Altar’D State in Lexington, Ky.
And it has been a (crazy) amazing journey ever since! I’ve worked in retail now for fourteen years, but I truly feel that my career didn’t start until I joined the Altar’D State family. I have now been an assistant store manager, a store manager thrice over, and now I’m a member of the Altar’D State merchant team. I will say, that with every new position I have had to work harder (and smarter) than I have ever worked in my career, but I have also experienced greater personal and professionally growth as a result, and I am thankful for being a part of company that effectively challenges me at every turn- and more importantly believes in my ability to overcome those challenges and to grow.
Every day I am fulfilled, and blessed beyond measure because the Lord brought me into a family that allows me to perfectly marry my personal passions with my professional pursuits, and with every challenge, every hurdle… there is a peace that what I do is with purpose. I leave each day knowing that what I did had an impact on someone’s life. Someone, either through our volunteer efforts locally, our Mission Monday program nationally, or through our child sponsorships in Peru…. was blessed because I worked as unto the Lord that day. I have been blessed beyond what I could ever ask or think, because I have more than a job here at Altar’D State- I have a calling.