FED UP. That’s how I felt. But it wasn’t with food, it was with my job. I had only been working at my new position for a couple of months but it was amazing how much had already happened. Layoffs, HR and criminal investigations, management turnover, mandatory overtime, and unachievable goals I was certain had to be someone’s idea of torture. Good times.
I was coming home every night feeling like I had just returned from a war zone. I would pull into my garage, turn off the engine, and place my head on the wheel. The feeling of nausea and cramping from a stomach stuffed with the daily fill of angst and bitterness would climax. And I would just weep. Not cry…weep.
It wasn’t just the chaos at work that was getting to me. It was the fact that no matter what I did, I just couldn’t seem to escape it. I must have applied to 100 jobs in a period of 3 months. Some jobs seemed like they were tailored made for me. Have you ever read a job description that was such good fit you thought you were reading an excerpt from your own resume?? That’s how it was. But nothing came of them. Not even a rejection. Just nothing.
I would sit in my garage, tears gliding around the curve of the steering wheel and dropping down on to my lap, and I would replay the unjust, soul-wearying circumstances of the day over and over again. I couldn’t believe this was happening to me.
After one particular weepy time in the garage, I was talking to my husband, Ray, about how much I wanted a new job and all the things I was going through and how I hadn’t done anything to deserve this situation. Suddenly, he asked me the most peculiar question, “Have you been praying for the others at your job?” I was stunned into silence by his ridiculous question. I was barely holding on to sanity and he wanted to know if I was praying for the people that were driving me insane!! He took advantage of the silence to give me some advice. Ray encouraged me to remember that I had a mission; a reason why God had placed me at this job, at this time. He asked me to commit to going to work early and praying over my workplace. I was instructed to visit every desk and office and pray for the people they belonged to. Then he asked me to pray over my office and ask God to use my presence at this job for His glory.
Without any confidence or the slightest hope that this would make any difference in my situation, I did what Ray said. And I was partly right. Nothing changed in my circumstance, the same crazy stuff was happening. But what did change was my mindset about it. Colossians 3:1-3 reads:
If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
Shortly after beginning Ray’s prayer challenge, I started noticing and hearing things happening in the lives of my coworkers, even my boss. Miscarriages, divorces, loss of parents, foreclosures…cancer. I was surrounded by a lot of hurting people that were, in turn, hurting others. Had this always been going on? Why hadn’t I realized this before? It was because I had been too stuffed, too full of myself. Every thought, every feeling, every notion had been about me; what I felt, what I thought, what I wanted. I was so stuffed with own considerations that I had no room to consider others, even God and His intentions for my life. Praying helped to get the focus off me and back where is should be. It was like a light turned on. I realized that I was here to direct some very hurtful, hurting people to the only source for their relief, God. It wasn’t always going to be pleasant, and I may not always be treated or received well, but it was a job I was glad to have. Why? Because I knew my life and peace were securely hidden away in Christ where no circumstances could touch it. My job, with all of its ills, was the perfect setting to invite others to “hide-out” with me.
Words for Syncing
Sync a little deeper…
Do you think more about earthly things than heavenly things?
What makes it hard for you to keep your mind on things above?
How could focusing on God’s mission for your life change your mindset about a current difficult circumstance?
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