It’s Tuesday night.
One week ago was Tom’s first night unemployed or as the government likes to call it, “reemployed.” No matter the terminology, he’s without a job. There are many ways to look at it…he’s not tethered to anyone or any business, his schedule is wide open. He’s having breakfast with a friend this morning, and if you’d like to do the same, I’m sure he could squeeze you in. In fact there would be no squeezing at all, except maybe to hug you hello. 🙂
We have had many waves of emotion, but one thing has remained constant–our awareness of God’s hand at work in and through us. Tom has been waking up before the sun each morning and spending extended time in thought, prayer and reading. This is the best benefit of having no commitments, but only if it lasts a season. How difficult it must be to face this uncertainty for an extended period of time.
We have dear friends who are approaching their 1st year anniversary of
unemployment reemployment. It has been hard on them financially, but their marriage has actually improved in the process. How is this possible? The answer is simple, God uses everything for His glory and our growth in godliness–our good times, our bad times, our healthy times and our sick times. Everything is in His hands, and He delights to mold us and make us into creatures who reflect the image of His Son.
So we are grateful to be in this place.
We may not like it. We may wish it hadn’t happened. But God in His wisdom has chosen this for us now, and we know He is the only One we can trust.
But honestly, we’ve both been a little sad today. We’ve talked about the why’s, but there isn’t a reason we’re feeling sad, we just do. So we purpose not to give it anymore attention than that. Tomorrow we’ll probably wake up and have a completely different emotion to deal with. This is how it is when you’re facing a significant life change. And we’ve learned the best thing to do is…
…to be as normal as you can.
Tom is cleaning the kitchen as I type. I made him his favorite snack around 4p. today just so he knows I love having him home as much as I enjoy him working. And this is what I often did when he got home from work. He is working, but his work involves looking for a new job.
About two weeks ago Tom heard Dave Ramsey advise someone whose husband had been out of work for awhile on what to do when the waiting goes on and on. He said it was of most importance to get up each morning, take a shower, get dressed and report to work as if you were getting paid. Spend your days exercising, networking, applying for jobs and studying God’s Word. Be busy being the best you can be while you wait.
And the key is to remember we aren’t waiting on a job…we’re waiting on God to speak. And since He is always faithful we know the waiting won’t last forever.
How do you work together as you wait on God to speak? Pay attention to what comes out of your heart, because waiting is the best revealer of what motivates us when things are going well.
Tomorrow I’ll share with you an idea I’ve come up with to help Tom as he waits…
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Great post. My wife and I are still with you in prayer. I love your togetherness as you go through this. As it says in Ps. 133 God bestows his blessing where there’s unity. I am looking forward to see how God uses this situation. Take heart, all will be well.
We thank God for giving us new friends in Kenya. 🙂 Your encouragement is a strong support to us in ways you probably don’t realize. Thank you for sharing your heart and wisdom with us. We’re humbled that you would do so.
Blessings to you and your wife,
Tom and Debi
Tom and Debi,
I totally agreed that God is great and it is also great to know you guys across the seas. We’re soon starting our own Christian website and we hope you’ll check it out and like it. Christianity is universal and you guys have a totally awesome blog. We’ll keep you in our prayers as we continue following your great blog posts.
May God bless you guys exceedingly, abundantly above what you can imagine.
Walter and Janet
Walter and Janet,
Thank you for your continued encouragement. We can’t tell you how much it means to us. Let us know about your Christian website–we’ll be sure to check it out.
Blessings to you both,
Tom and Debi
Wise expressions of a waiting heart, Debi. Thank you for sharing. Staying tuned into what the Lord is saying and what your spouse is experiencing is a solid foundation for every day. I echo Walter: “I am looking forward to see how God uses this situation. Take heart, all will be well.”
Thank you, Lori. I’m so grateful for your friendship and to be the recipient of your spiritual gift–encouragement.
Blessings my friend,
Debi, my husband lost his job in March of 2009, after 27 years with the same company. We had just brought our adopted son, Max, home from Russia about three months before that. Job loss is such a big blow to a man’s sense of self-worth … but since Mark had always wanted to start his own business, I encouraged him to use that first year of being “reemployed” to explore that possibility. We had his severance pay, and were still covered for health insurance, and I SO enjoyed having him around the house! I made a conscious decision to treat his search as a “treasure hunt”, knowing that God still has plans for all of us.
Although he is enjoying working his newly-developed business, he did find another full-time position eventually. We really needed that health care coverage, and just couldn’t afford it on our own.
Praying for both of you, on this new leg of your journey together!
Thank you for sharing your experience. We realize now more than ever how this can affect a marriage for bad or for good. Our heart is to listen and learn from others who have gone through this and to share it with our TRV community. And most importantly to listen to God who knows where it is He is leading us.
One of these days we need to meet for lunch! 🙂
I will be praying for you and your journeys through this unknown time! I’m excited to see what God has in store for the both of you! It must be pretty awesome since he moved you from a place of comfort! I don’t know it always seems the most uncomfortable I have been were the best mountain tops ever once I got to the top of that mountain!!! Looking forward to hearing what the mountain top will be!!!
Yes, it’s true some of the best times are preceded by the hard times. Great reminder – thank you!
Tom and Debi
Thank you so much for this post! Today marks 2 months I have not been working (different situation). I needed this very much.
It’s good to know we’re not alone. We’ll pray for you in the waiting place.
Tom and Debi
I have a story that a friend shared long ago. She and her preschooler where doing errands. Running around, getting in and out of the car. Her little boy was tired and getting grumbly. Then he started asking for lunch. Finally, my friend jerked around in the car pointed her finger at her sweet little guy and told him that we would get lunch. She has always feed him lunch and he would get it that day too. You just have to wait until its the right time.
She shared that at Bible study the next day. And how she felt terrible for scolding her little guy about the same problem as she & her husband where experiencing as they where waiting for an answer about buying a house. God had always provided for them and they believed always would. They just had to wait for the right time.
I will start praying for your job situation & the waiting. Your right time is coming.
Debi, Our hearts go out to you and Tom. It’s not difficult to sense that God is deeply working in you and through you in ways that he wouldn’t have been able to if Tom’s job had continued. And for that, we give thanks. But there’s no doubt that these are uncertain times. You hit upon a great insight when you said that tomorrow your emotions will probably be in a different place. We found that our emotions slid all over the place. But in hind-sight that was good. It was all part of the healing process as we were learning how to take this new event to the Lord –gather it all and present it to Him (all the little bits and pieces), as we had with other uncertainties in our life together.
Even now, several years later though, I/we still feel the sting of all we went through when Steve’s job was eliminated. Our hearts truly are with you on this journey. But as we look back on what we went through with all that happened to us we know the pain and uncertainty deeply enriched our lives and ministry as we’re MUCH more sensitive to the pain of others who are walking down this road. You won’t hear pat and easy “answers” coming from our mouths or hearts, because there are none. It goes differently for everyone. Prayerfully, your journey has a bright ending. We believe it will.
But one thing we do know –it’s something you mentioned in this blog. This is another one of those “opportunities” which will reveal who you are. Do you truly trust Him? Will you put intentionality into pulling together, as husband and wife, rather than turning on each other? Will you keep taking the garbage that keeps trying to fill your heart and mind and give it to the Lord? Will you continually “ask, seek, and knock” no matter how tired you get? And will you keep pushing away bitterness, which will try to sabotage your peace? The enemy of our faith will keep pushing at you –manipulating Truth, trying to get you to believe lies. With all that is within you, don’t allow it to take root. It will come in ways that you may not at first recognize it, but then will grow if you don’t tear it out and throw it away from you.
One of my most used phrases during that time was to tell myself, “Don’t go there.” I often could recognize when my mind was on its way to a “thoughtful journey” which wasn’t healthy and I had to stop it before my thoughts became destructive. It’s a slippery slope downward if you let the enemy play with your mind and emotions –particularly when it comes to your relationship with your spouse. Yes, sometimes we need to process through certain thoughts so they are thoroughly dealt with so they can be properly put away, but there’s an insidious turn to a darker side in those thoughts that can take place if you aren’t careful. I/we pray God gives you and Tom discernment and insight into what is healthy to process through and consider and what isn’t.
Again, our thoughts and love are with you. We’re continually praying for you. Hugs to you and Tom. We’ll talk more next week. Cindy (and Steve) from Marriage Missions International
You already know what I am praying for. take care
With all of these wonderful new friends praying for you and Tom and with your strong faith, I am sure that God is listening. My prayers are with you both too. Love you and Tom so very much. Mom
My husband has a job, but his pay just barely covers our expences. Add a car repair to that and we find ourself waiting on the Lord a lot. I found that much of this article applies to us as well in our circumstance.
For those who don’t get to watch you as you go through this, I want them to know that your words so reflect your actions. Once again, you are great examples for us. Can’t wait to see what our Faithful God has in store.