Wow, this is hard to write. I lost my job yesterday. I’d been looking for a job for a long time and although I have felt led to do certain things using my talent and in ways that I truly believed would bless the Lord, I haven’t yet “found” the way to make that work and so a job finally came along. Not a good “fit” for me . . . not enough salary to live on . . . but I took it and told myself it was God’s will and He’d see that His purposes were fulfilled. I believed that. After 5 weeks in this job, they let me go with vague statements and no cause. It shattered my world and left me wounded and beaten. That was yesterday. This morning, I am bewildered but trying to listen to Him. Thoughts of “but I did a good job, isn’t that enough?” and “but I need . . . how am I going to . . . “ are mixed up with “but you gave me this ability and surely you want me to use it?” I don’t know what “THE” answer is, but I do know some answers.
- A friend who was on his way to a scheduled event with several other people answered the phone when I called to tell him what happened and got off the highway, changed his plans and schedule, and came to my house to pray and listen to me, and take me to dinner.
- Late last night in the quiet of my room, my confused thoughts tore at me and so I . . . prayed? No, I went online and surfed. I found a friend online and started chatting with him. Instant messaging. We were online chatting for a couple hours. His love and friendship blesses me. I slept well after speaking to him. My friend, I should add, is very ill and will likely within days be with the Lord, but you’d never know it. He doesn’t say “why me?” when we speak. He says “how are you?”
So, this morning I’m thinking and also trying not to think as I’ve been accused of “overthinking” sometimes. Ask my friend Rick. He’ll tell you. Maybe. It’s true though. Anyway, as I sat quietly, I realized all that was “wrong” about the job I lost. I also realized that I’d prayed for God’s will to be fulfilled, and for the opportunity to find provision while using the talents He’s blessed me with for His glory. I love Him and trust Him, yet I found myself feeling relieved that “it” was over when I got this small part-time and totally “wrong for me” job and was shocked and shaken when it ended even though the job did not use those talents He’s given me.
Is there a different way to look at this? Yes, I believe so. You know, I’ve taken a lot of road trips. Love to do that. As a rule, along the way there’s the need to get out of the car, stretch, use the restroom, have a snack, buy a postcard or two, and then venture on. Sometimes, those “rest stops” are pleasant, yet we do not stay in that place, nor do we reverse direction and return to the place we left behind. The rest stop serves its purpose and we move on ahead. Yet, I couldn’t see this yesterday as I sat in the parking lot outside the place I’d been recently working. Today, the sun is shining and I can see a bit more clearly. At those rest stops on the road trips, the purpose was clear. God’s purposes in what He calls us to do is not always clear to us, but it is always good. I don’t know what His purpose was in my taking that job I lost, but I know it was of Him and that it had a purpose. I can beat myself up with “why” and “how” and try to find all the reasons and all the shortcomings in those I worked with and in me and rationalize it to bits, but He doesn’t want me to do that. It serves no purpose. His purpose was fulfilled. It’s time for me to move on ahead.
I paused at a rest stop on my journey with the Lord. My ultimate destination is ahead of me. I’m holding His hand and striving to trust Him more as I move on. “I trust in, rely on, and am confident in You, O Lord; I say You are my God. My times are in Your hands.” Psalm 31:14-15