Faith Over Sight: When Manifestations Don’t Work

Dears, there’s this Biblical text, 2 Corinthians 5:7, “for we walk by faith not by sight.” This has been the message for me these past few weeks. As I’ve been sharing on the blog, I’m going through a process of Leaning into my own Expansion. I quit my job recently and I don’t know what I’m going to do next yet. Until a couple of weeks ago I thought I did. This blog post is about how I thought I was manifesting an aspiration and it flopped. The process didn’t go as intended.

To my fellow people who alchemize energy and use their magnetic magic: you know when you thought you’re manifesting something you really really wanted, and it turns out that you weren’t? It sucks. And it’s confusing. Have you ever received all the signs, the omens, the synchronicities that made you believe that whatever you’re working on behind the screen is bound to happen at any moment, and then you get a notice that it’s not happening as you visualized or intended? I felt like I got played by God. Again. This is the second time this year.

The first time I felt I was manifesting something big this year that I actually wanted was when I applied for a PhD position earlier this year. I wasn’t actively looking for a PhD but it was in my intentions and I was very receptive to it. The vacancy just came to me through a lecturer who is very dear to me; it felt like sent from heaven. The journey of applying for this position was honestly terrifying but also exciting.

I was living through a “what if” that was very magical. So perfect. So big. Beyond what I had imagined I could even aspire to. The help I received was just beyond anything I can describe with words. The gratitude that I lived got me ecstatic. I was overwhelmed with reference letters that spoke very highly of me. Reading those letters felt like receiving Amazing Grace. It was overwhelming and humbling. One thing is receiving compliments and knowing of your capabilities, and another thing is having people writing official letters with accolades for you.

There were also moments of panic and anxiety. Horrible. I even started smoking weed again during this period after two months because my anxiety was through the roof. I was constantly reassuring myself that “the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself” – to not be afraid of potential rejection, even though the probabilities seemed low back then.

It was crushing when, despite a completed Master thesis relating closely to the research project, and glowing recommendations from a lecturer and colleague in academia, I was notified that I would be put on a reserve list in case the interviews wouldn’t sum up to anything. A few days later I received another notification informing me that the position was filled. It was painful, but I got over it. And found beautiful lessons through that journey. But still, I really thought that that was going to be the next, natural step in my journey.

The second time I thought I got that “this is it” feeling was recently – a couple of weeks ago. I met (with) several people over the past two months, who all played a role in what would become a seemingly serendipitous moment when I saw a job posting for a job that I’d been wanting for years: teaching at university. There were several moments during my bachelor’s and masters’ years when I aspired to become a teacher in tertiary education. One of the reasons why I was open to and interested in a PhD was that it’d facilitate my opportunities to teach in tertiary education. But you don’t necessarily need a PhD to teach. So the magical experiences start unfolding when I saw the vacancy, which was at the university where I studied. The job would be lecturing bachelor’s and master’s students who are currently doing the program(s) I did.

I know professors, lecturers, and faculty staff at this school… I was always quite involved with the university – especially the programs I was in. Wrote about that too in The Power of Self-Conviction. I even wrote that I became inspired to teach during my university years in that post dating 2 years back.

So, you see how everything might be painting a picture here? Me quitting my job, not knowing what to do, leaning into my own expansion and whatnot, and bam! this happens. It felt again like sent from heaven.

So I did what I felt like Life was asking of me: I leaned in. I wrote my motivation letter and was graced with a glowing recommendation letter from a senior lecturer in that faculty. I knew people at the university who allowed me to use their names as a reference and were willing to write a letter if needed… I mean, the willingness and disposition to help me made me feel like getting this job was meant to be. I was going through it again – what felt like a vortex of amazingness: I felt like I was aligned as fuck! Joyful, ecstatic, grounded, and in tune with myself and Life. Was seeing synchronicities everywhere. Even after I had applied for the job, I got an email at 13:13 informing me that they had received my application and that I would hear from Selection Committee as soon as possible.

I waited. And waited. And waited. I called after six working days to ask if everything was okay because the interviews were supposed to start three working days after I had sent my application in. It was then that I heard that the interviews were taking place on that day, and the reason why I didn’t hear anything was that I wasn’t selected for the round of interviews. Shit.

Ever since I got that news I’ve had and dealt with different emotions. From anger to disappointment to sadness to disbelief. But there was also a subtle peace.

This is not my first manifestation rodeo. I’ve succeeded quite a few times and failed miserably other times – like this year. There’s always something greater playing in the background when it comes to those seemingly “failed manifestations”. The resolution is usually fantastic but may take a bit longer than expected. But shit, I didn’t see that one coming.

While processing my emotions, a thought came to me: Faith over sight. Fate over sight. I instantly thought of the biblical text I started this post with. The “Fate over sight” thought was also a reminder that I’ve been in positions before where I had no clue as to what to do next and I ended up in places beyond my wildest dreams (check out the Power of Self-Conviction as an example).

Not getting what I wanted felt really fucked up, honestly, but “faith over sight” and “Fate over sight” reminded me that I’ve entrusted my journey to a Higher Power and that I must trust that this Power’s doing Its thing. These messages reminded me to let go of the idea of controlling outcomes. Messages like these remind me that my Fate (with the capital letter F) may not be the idealized version of the life I have planned for myself. But I have precedent that my Fate is even bigger than my imagination; my highest destiny stretches beyond my limited scope. The last 7 years especially testify to this. It’s been wild and rewarding. But if I think about my whole life… My Fate is indeed bigger than my mind. It’s just that over the past 7 years I’ve become really aware of how my life has been shifting.

What now that I didn’t get it?

I don’t know. Ironically, it doesn’t feel like I’m back to square one though. But it sucks to have invested all the emotional and energetic labor into bringing something forth just for it not to happen as I thought it would. It’s humbling too, reminding me that I can’t do everything and the world doesn’t revolve around my intentions.

So as much as it annoys me and even enrages me that things didn’t go as I wanted them to go this time, I find solace in knowing that all things are working for my good. Life has shown me kind grace so many times that I keep choosing to have faith in what’s in store for me over what I see (or fail to see) in my immediate reality. (But shit like this makes you wanna scream askfjhsegusdighdrkjgd and punch something. Really.)

I have my fair share of “failed manifestations”, but dears, my Fate has brought me to amazing places. It is because of my precedent that I keep my faith.

This post was not “intended”; it was inspired. There is an intended post coming up that I’ve been working on for some weeks: Fate Favors the Brave. In there, I go more in-depth with what I mean by Fate, Favor, and Brave. I know it will all make sense one day. Even me writing these words right now.

I’ve been mad. But hopeful. Confused. But grateful. Processing gracefully, aware that this too shall pass. I hope that this post encourages you to be comfortable with your fragility and to give your emotions the space to be when you experience disappointment. May your faith in what’s in store for you be stronger than your sight of what’s not visible yet.

Thank you for your time, dears. Remember that there’s something bigger out there – like Emeli Sande calls it, a “Sweet Architect”. What a beautiful name, but still falls short because words can’t even begin to describe it. But we use words to make sense of things. Some people call this force Life. And others God. But the point is, we are part of the creation of this Sweet Architect and we are Architects ourselves. There’s a plan. We are part of it. My intention is to work in harmony with it; flow with it. This means that sometimes manifestations like I intend them won’t work. I’m okay with that by now, even as experiencing these moments continues to feel like biting bitter lemons. I do feel like I’ve gotten better at dealing with these disappointments though. 🙂 My faith is much more solid. I’m grounded in an awareness that extends beyond what I see in my immediate reality.

Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I do have Christian influences in my upbringing. As such, I’ll finish this post with a Biblical text because it was inspired by a biblical text:

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Jeremiah 29:11

And for this, I’m excited.

With love,

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