These are trying times. The coronavirus has affected all aspects of our lives. I just read the news that 3.3 million Americans have filed for unemployment. And my heart truly goes out to those who have been laid off and are struggling to pay for the bills and survive.
I know I have been writing a lot lately. Since I don’t have any work, I have more time on my hands. Also, I realize that life sometimes is not elegant or dainty. There are times when true hardships overwhelm us. I don’t want this website to be immune to the issues that we currently face. I also believe we can uphold and encourage each other in these trying times. My prayer is that we will become more unified as a country, seeing how much good we can do when we arise to the occasion.
So how can we keep strong in this difficult time?
We must keep in mind that there are no hard and fast guidelines. There are no rules set in stone that we can follow.
We just need to trust and hope.
Remember the song by Horatio Spafford. “It is well with my soul.” He wrote this song after the tragic deaths of his four daughters. It was an unspeakable, heartbreaking tragedy. Yet despite it, he was able to say,
” When sorrows like sea billows roll, whatever my lot, thou has taught me to say, it is well with my soul.”Horatio Spafford, “It is well with my Soul.”
It should be well with our souls. We have a heavenly father that will take care of those who have faith and trust in Him. Throughout the scriptures, the Lord shows his fatherly presence, especially in difficult and troubling times.
Perhaps you are trying to get a new job or transfer to a new career which has now fallen through because of the coronavirus and the major layoffs. Even so, remember that God is ultimately in control.
I know that this will be difficult for those who have been recently laid off. When my father was laid off three times during my childhood, it was hard to witness. But it made me realize just how temporary our jobs and life is. That there is no real consolation in this life, anything can happen. It also reminded me that our real hope and permanent consolation should arise from our faith in the Lord.
So here are some tips that I hope will help you continue to stay strong.
We all need a bit of solace in our lives. Now more than ever. I like to spend a least half an hour in the morning dedicated to devotions. Doing this allows me to have a more positive mentality for the day, as I have peace because I am reminded of God’s sovereignty and goodness.
My church elder sent an email with an article, “All things from his Fatherly Hand,” from the DeYoung, Restless and Reformed website. I was particularly struck with the last paragraph which says, “God moves in mysterious ways; we may not always understand why life is what it is. But we can face the future unafraid because we know that nothing moves, however mysterious, except by the hand of that great Unmoved Mover who moves all and is moved by none, and that this Mover is not an impersonal force but the God who is our Father in Heaven.”
If you are feeling overwhelmed, then I would encourage you to take some time in daily devotion. My father sent me a text a while ago with this Instagram post, ” Don’t say that God is silent, when your Bible is closed.” This is the time to open your Bible, to explore and understand God’s truth. He will give you peace if you come to Him.
As it says in scripture,
“Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”Matthew 11:28
Never underestimate the power of prayer. Whenever I am feeling overwhelming, sad, or just uncertain of life in general, I take a few moments to pray. Sometimes these moments happen spontaneously, usually when I am at work, and getting depressed that I seem to be going nowhere in life. After I take my burdens and concerns to the Lord, I am relieved. I am reminded that God is in control.
My continual prayer is that God will convict me of what I need to do and accomplish every single day. That I do His will, and not for selfish ambition or vain conceit, but whatever I do for work and outside of work will be for His glory.
So if you are feeling anxiety, anger, or anything, take it before the Lord. He will give you peace and strengthen you.
Ask for aid and Help
Don’t be afraid to ask for prayer and aid. If you are struggling spiritually, don’t hesitate to call your local church so that the deacons and elders can pray for you. Also, many churches have connections to job partnerships and organizations. So do let your local church know that you are out of work. They will be able to put you in the loop if a job arises that meets your unique skill sets.
Volunteer or do Acts of Service to a Local Ministry
Sometimes we need to get outside of our problems. And a great way to do this is to serve and help others. This is why I sing in my church choir and make quilts for organizations such as pregnancy centers and the military. Because serving others takes our minds off what is going on in our lives. When I am at choir rehearsal or the quilting ministry, I forget about all the rejection emails of the jobs I have applied in hopes of a better financial future. My whole focus is to learn and serve. So if you are finding yourself out of a job, consider volunteering or helping someone else.
Remember who we ultimately work for
Our work and being should be from what we do for God’s Kingdom. Remember our work doesn’t define us, it is just a small portion of who we are. But remember the One who we will work for all eternity, and let us not forget to work for him, to preach the gospel of peace and give glory to our Lord and Savoir. As I mentioned earlier, I pray that I will be able to do God’s work every single day. Ask God to convict you of what you need to work on, spiritually, relationally, and professionally. This can be certainly helpful to those who are out of work now. Let this be a time that you look at your life and examine it. Maybe through this hardship, you will find something about yourself you weren’t aware of before.
Let us not lose hope or faith. I am reminded of Job, who as it is written in the Bible was a man righteous among all others. Yet, everything was taken away from him in the space of only a few weeks, even his health. Although he went through a time of self-doubt, he still believed in God. Yet God did not answer Job’s question of why He allowed these things to happen to him. But He did say that He was with him and that He would carry him through.
This brings a powerful point; God doesn’t promise that those who believe in him won’t suffer from hardships. But He does promise to carry and guide us through them.
I hope that this post gave you some hope. Things will get better. I shall pray that this virus is eradicated soon and that jobs will be available soon. I shall leave with this verse.
Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.Hebrews 4:16
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