The company that I work for just announced that they are closing the branch where I am employed. The announcement came as a shock to those of us employed there. This was clearly something management had deliberately kept hidden and based on recent events it didn’t seem like a part of a strategic plan it seemed like a decision that was made rather quickly. We each had scheduled meetings with management. I’ve been in the workforce since I was 16 years old and this was my first experience with something like this, I have never been fired from anywhere, but first time for everything, right? Waiting for my scheduled meeting was nerve-racking to say the least. I feel like I finally have a real and honest glimpse into what it feels like to lose your job suddenly. Yes, we all know about the unemployment situation that exists in our country but until it happens to you, then you don’t really know what that feels like. You don’t really know all the thoughts that go through your mind, the doubts, the fears, the anxiety, the unlimited stress that comes at you from every angle.
In these individual meetings with management each employee was given a specific timeframe for the remainder of their employment. Some people were asked to leave immediately, some were given 6 months, some were even given a year, me, I was given three months. Yes, three months to live (at work). Now, I’ve always heard that the mature responsible thing is that you should have a cushion of savings in the event that something like this happens. The recommended amount has always been enough to last you about six months to year. I don’t know about you guys (the average person) but I do not have 6 months to a year of savings set aside to cover my expenses, so naturally panic set in, severe panic. The thing is I’ve already been dealing with some stressful medically related financial situations as a result of the accident that happened earlier this year that I was trying to finalize and wrap up and now this. I don’t need to be unemployed now! I certainly did not need this added stress. So, the panic set in and the anxiety so I prayed and waited on that peace that passes all understanding because clearly in this situation I’m not there yet.
So, here’s what happened next, someone I worked with previously that had been my manager in the past reached out to me when they heard the news. We kept in touch, so it wasn’t strange that I heard from him, but what was surprising is that he wanted to offer me a job. That’s great right? No, it’s not great actually. He didn’t go into great detail about the position but he did mention that I would need to learn some new skills and that there was some finance and accounting involved. The thing is, I hate numbers, with a passion. I could not imagine leaving what I do now to crunch numbers for eight hours a day for the next however many years. Now to be clear, I can manage finances and accounting just fine, my own that is, but I have absolutely no interest in immersing myself in that for a career. Was I grateful for the opportunity that he was extending to me? Of course, I was about to become unemployed soon so any job is better than no job in my case. However, if I’m given 3 months to live (at work) is it so wrong to want to take the time to seek new employment doing something that I would actually like and enjoy?
So I spent the next few days looking for other jobs and coming to the realization that I don’t really want any of these other jobs, they don’t excite me. There didn’t seem to be anything else out there that I really wanted to do. I had to wonder, don’t I fit anywhere else? What I really want is to just write and evangelize, but unfortunately no one is lining up around the block to pay me to do those things. Why wasn’t I borne into a wealthy family where getting my bills paid would be the least of my concerns? Am I really the only one who has ever thought that thought? Regardless, I’m educated, experienced and I have a good skillset so I knew I was employable but what if I didn’t find an equitable job within the three month timeframe. So I worried for a few days about not finding another job in time and being forced to take the finance related job and being miserable but at least I would be earning a living and have my bills paid. That’s what it’s all about right? I owe, I owe, I owe, so off to work I go. My mother used to say that to me, I get it now.
Then one evening a few days later I got the call, the hiring manager for the position called me and said I was referred to him by my previous manager. I was completely caught off guard and unprepared; I wasn’t ready for an impromptu phone interview. Surprisingly the conversation was natural and went very well. I learned more about the company, their vision, their goals and much more about the position and at that point I realized I had literally been worrying for nothing. There would be some finance and accounting related to the position but it would not be the bulk of my duties, what I would be required to learn and know would actually be performed by other staff members but the position simply required that I know it as well. The reality was that this job was an advancement opportunity in my career field, it was a promotion. Now that I had more information and a better understanding I began to feel excited that I can actually do this job, and be good at it. The hiring manager ended the call by saying that they would like to bring me on in a few weeks and that he would be in touch with the details. One door closing, another door opening I was beginning to feel better about everything. I felt like God was looking out for me and that he had lined this up just for me, my heart swelled with the utmost gratitude.
There’s more to this story, the irony is I never intended to stay with this company as long as I did. During my employment with them I was always on the lookout for something else, I had even been on interviews but for some reason things never worked out. This year was the year that I was determined to leave but then I had a sudden accident and that changed all my plans. This company that I was so determined to get away from treated me with extreme kindness and generosity while I dealt with my accident related health issues. I now know why God kept me here as long as he did even though I tried many times before to leave. He knew that the accident would happen and that he would use this company to bless me and sustain me during that situation. I had also told God that I want this year to be my absolute last year with this company; I needed to move on and grow. According to my scheduled management meeting guess what my last day there is supposed to be…December 31st 2013. How accurate is that as an answer to my prayer.
In my About Me page I stated that I am an ever learning ever growing child of the Most High God and I really am. Sometimes I think I’ve mastered and understood something like faith or patience and then a situation happens and I have to learn to apply these things all over again. Sometimes you pray a prayer that seems to not get answered for a very long time or sometimes you wonder if God is even listening or paying attention at all. We will not always be privy to what God is doing and working on for us behind the scenes. So through all the strange, weird, and crazy circumstances I have experienced I am learning and trying hard to remember that none of this that I experience should scare me, because I can trust my God, he knows what he’s doing.
6But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
8 It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.
Follow me on twitter: @MerakiBlog