Having recently lost my job as a child and youth minister I have some insights to share with you about my experience and frustrations with job loss and how to combat the depression that seeks to inevitably encroach upon you and your family during your job hunt process.
As a Christian, you must realise that the only security you have is in Christ. His word is the Rock whose house you are building and trusting so that when all things are tested on the final day you will see the wisdom of your investments. If God has given you His very Son, His own blood will He not also take care of your daily needs? Trust and obey your Master setting your ultimate affections on things above while taking a day at a time as each day carries its own woes (Matthew 6:34).
Your identity is in Christ. This is why I am against the whole “rapper who is a Christian” label as opposed to “Christian who is a rapper”. If being a rapper is your identity (your job) what happens when you lose the ability to rap (or do your job)? You are destroyed. However, if your identity is not in your job but in Christ even through job loss you will be crushed but not destroyed. This will also mentally prepare you to work a minimum wage job if you need to.
Is Christ enough for you? Or are you only content when you are working a job you enjoy? I have found it helpful reflecting upon the vanity of life. Without Christ all is vanity. Know this that the works of men whether great or feeble will all come to an end and be forgotten. The labour of man’s hands is merely a means of occupying him on the road to death. What you must realise is that this is your worst life now and you must do your Masters will where ever He takes you and however it makes you feel. He has promised to work it out for His glory and your good. Lean not on your own understanding and endure this light and momentary affliction.
Through the Storm
As Charles Spurgeon has put it “I have learnt to kiss the wave that thrusts me upon the rock of ages.” Don’t waste your sufferings. Draw close to Christ who is able to supply all your needs according to his riches in Glory. Remember your family. Your wife and children will also be feeling the effects of your job loss. Don’t think that this has only happened to you. Continue to do family devotions and be active in church. This will put your circumstances continually in the right perspective and will grant you a peace that surpasses understanding.
For Those Who Have Jobs
Finally, some practical points for everyone to consider whether you are employed or unemployed.
- Keep cv/portfolio up to date – You never know when you will be out of a job. All it takes is from some unforeseeable circumstance or a person in a position of authority to take a disliking to you to be jobless. Keep your CV and portfolio up to date so that you can begin the job hunt from the get go of your unemployment.
- Savings – develop a practice of saving 30% of your surplus income and develop an emergency fund that can only be accessed in extreme circumstances such as job loss, car repair, emergency plane flights etc. This will reelevate the financial burden when the elevatable job loss or change occurs.
- Always upskill – Continue to develop new skills in your personal time. This will give you increased confidence when applying to new positions and can open additional opportunities to you in the future.