Posted by: JennyRain | January 6, 2010

Employing Patience. Employing Persistence.

My friend got a job!

I am so thrilled for my girlfriend Carla who was just recently offered a job.

Due to a set of very unfortunate circumstances, my girlfriend has been without employment for almost a year and a half.

November of 2008 I was convinced that I heard God say “She’ll get a job after Christmas.” I just did not think God meant Christmas of 2009!

Our small group has prayed with her, grieved with her, and questioned God about why this Godly woman is struggling with such difficult circumstances.

I have blogged about my buddy on more than one occasion because as I have walked with her through this – it has impacted my own image of God.

God says: The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; He delivers them from all their troubles.  Psa. 34:17. My friend was in trouble, she had real need, why wasn’t God answering?

But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you. Matthew 6:33. My friend was doing this daily, and she still was in grave need.

It is really difficult to watch friends and family endure suffering – especially when it is ongoing.

You pray for healing and yet remain sick. You pray that God would provide you with a child, but remain barren throughout your child-bearing years. You pray for provision but eventually have to file bankruptcy and lose your house and all of your possessions. You pray for your family’s safety and yet they are killed in an automobile accident. 

What do you do with this kind of suffering?

It puts to shame the Christian myth: “God doesn’t give us any more than we can handle.”

Oh really?

Maybe the people who keep spouting this bad theology should read this verse in 2 Corinthians 1:

We were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of life (2 Cor 1.8)

Watching my girlfriend go through this past year and a half was tough for me – and it was not even my storm.

Knowing when to speak, when to just sit with my friend, when to help her to laugh or find faith in the One who seemingly had abandoned her, and knowing when to just listen became intentional.

My friend’s circumstance was not one that I could speak into, fix, or offer advice on because any action she could have done to rectify the situation, she had already tried.

What do you do when a loved one’s actions preempt your advice?

I mean – the prevailing American “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” myth states that if we are proactive in life – then supposedly we will not have problems right? Because challenges like a year and a half off of work only happen to those who are not “working hard enough.”

Carla’s life dispelled this myth for me because she was active – through her entire year and a half. She prayed. She got up every day and looked for a job. She attended networking events. She took advantage of every opportunity. She submitted to God’s leading. But still – there was no job.

For a year and a half – no job.

My friend was not praying for “desires” she was praying only that her basic needs would be met. She had real, felt needs and she was totally dependent upon her Heavenly Father to provide for simple things like food, mortgage, and health-care daily. 

And yet, her faith grew. In July of last year she penned the following email to me when I finally said to her “Carla, I just don’t get it…”

I don’t get it either and I certainly didn’t volunteer for it, however being completely at the end of myself and completely reliant upon God, I have begun to receive a few simple instructions.  Don’t know exactly what lies ahead, but I do know that God is who He says He is regardless of what it looks like to us.  He doesn’t seem to always have the same definition or timetable that we do.   

A friend said to me that when she went through a lengthy difficult time she thought would kill her, she finally had to accept “Let God be true and every man a liar–including me”  when it looked to her like God had completely forsaken her.  She said the worst that could happen was the circumstances would kill her and then she would be with Jesus anyway. She did come through to a better place and is here to testify to God’s goodness and faithfulness.   

This past week when I put some bills in the mail on time that I had the cash to pay for, it seemed like God said to be grateful and not focus on the other bills that weren’t due yet.  I have been advised to focus on being grateful for what I do have and not to focus on “lack” or worry about tomorrow, next week, next year or 20+ years from now.  From this point, I am told God’s abundance can multiply.  I have to ask myself, do I have what I need today? (even it it doesn’t look like what I think it should).  The answer is always “Yes.”  

I am convinced that we need to continue to pray and trust that all we give to Him is in His control.  As the challenges loom larger than there is anyway that I can handle, all I can do is my little part and turn the rest over to God.  The challenge is to not lose heart or lose faith.  There is no where else to go.  He has the words of eternal life.

Your drama queen “Sixteen Candles” friend,

Carla 

Wow. In her difficulty, her words comforted me and built my faith in my Heavenly Father.

Eventually – she had clarity on where she needed to focus her efforts. Against popular advice, she began seeking employment at one company only. She knew that God was calling her to that place at this time.

Nineteen months later, that is where she will be working.

I am so excited for my friend.

She held on to her faith. She held on to the belief that He was calling her to a certain place and that is where she will land.

I am so proud of my friend.

She faced the fire. She faced her fears. She held on to her hope.

Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift! 2 Cor 9.13-15

 

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Responses

  1. Thank you for posting this. I really, REALLY needed to read this, as I myself am having trouble finding a job and feel as though God has changed His mind and doesn’t want me to do the things I KNOW He asked of me years ago. I feel incapable, because I cannot get through these things without money enough to do it. But He IS faithful, and our timing is not His.

    Thank you for this reminder. It was a real blessing.

    • Hang in there… in listening to my friend this past year, she went through a lot of the same emotions as you are… you are definitely in my prayers and I’m so glad you were encouraged today.
      You are right He IS faithful and you are HIS daughter which enables you to do all things… that is what I learned from my friend Carla this year too. God bless you… keep the faith… I’ll be praying.
      Jenny

  2. Love this post. It is hard to watch people go through adversity, especially when you love them and want the best. You sound like an amazing friend.

  3. […] morning I had read a post about a woman who didn’t have a job for a long period of time, but still remained faithful to […]


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