Gabe's Story: Stepping Out in Obedience

by Gabe Puckett | @gabriel_puckett

About a year ago, I graduated from ministry school (SOSL). I had no job, no money, and was living at my Mom’s. I didn't know what I was going do with my life, but I knew that God had a plan. I felt like He wanted me to go apply to a nearby pizza place called Jet’s Pizza. I was having pride issues with that because it’s pretty much fast food, and I was almost 30 years old. Thirty- year old pizza delivery drivers aren't exactly the poster boys of the world’s most eligible bachelors. Oh well, I went in, applied, and got the job. That week I had four dreams in a row where God was calling me to be a teacher. By humbling myself and stepping out in obedience, God had revealed to me the next steps in my destiny.  

I quickly got to work applying to various programs and researching different schools. After months of research and hard work, I was approached by a network of charter schools in NYC. (Spoiler alert: I am writing this story down on a napkin in a Starbucks in East Village.) I was so excited that they were interested in me! Out of all the schools that I had researched, this network of charter schools was my number one choice.  

During the phone interview, the lady kept talking about chess. I was so surprised! I had taught chess before, but did not expect that to be the topic of our conversation. I explained to her that I am really not that good at chess. They wanted me to interview anyway! The next week I was on a plane on my way to NYC to interview for a position as a full time chess teacher.  

It cost me about 1/3 of my savings to fly to NYC on such short notice and do the interview, but I knew I had to take the chance!  The interview went horribly - a kid threw up a banana during my demo lesson, I failed all of their chess quizzes, and left the interview feeling really crummy.  

I decided I was going to make the most of my time in New York City, so I went exploring and found a church that was having a worship night. After the interview, I had felt like crap all day, but then during worship, God started to heal my heart. The pastor shared the story of Gideon: how God kept taking away all of his warriors, so that when he won the battle, everyone would know that it was the Lord’s victory. I thought to myself, if I get this job, it’s going to be just like that because throughout the interview process it was only my inadequacies and insecurities that had risen to the surface. If I got the job, I knew it was going to be the Lord’s victory. The presence was thick during worship. The pastor had everyone release a shout of victory, so everyone started yelling “Hallelujah” at the top of their lungs, especially me. Suddenly, my phone rang.  I ran outside. They told me I had the job, they were going to pay for my masters, and pay me $10,000 more than I expected!! They also told me that they believed I was going to be a rockstar teacher!

God is faithful. He put a dream in my heart and then brought it to fruition. Right now, I’m sitting in a coffee shop in East Village enjoying this amazing summer day. The city is beautiful. By acting in obedience, and stepping out boldly, I was able to turn the page to the next chapter of my destiny. I am so stoked to be here, and I know that God brought me here for more than just teaching. I’ve already had several opportunities to pray for people in the streets, in the parks, and on the trains. God loves this city so much, and I am so honored to partner with Him in serving and sowing in New York City.