Keeping Your Faith During the Job Search
by Aaron M. Basko
Job-searching is hard work. You’ll spend hours prospecting, networking, fine-tuning your resume, and applying to positions. It is also fraught with uncertainty. You may hear back from your first query, or you may not hear back from your first hundred. You may wonder, “Is there something more I should be doing?” or “Could I have been better prepared?” But there is one thing you can know—that God will use this time in your life if you let him.
God frequently utilizes times of transition and uncertainty in our lives to call us closer. During those moments, it is easier to admit that we are not in control, and that we need God’s help in directing our lives. Rather than a time to panic, a job search can be an opportunity to go deeper with God and to see more clearly what the Lord is doing in our lives. Here are three great ways to step closer to God and let him strengthen your faith.
Remember the Past
The heroes of the Old Testament set up monuments whenever they encountered God in a special way. They wanted to remind themselves and their descendants of what the Lord had done for them. In the same way, we should frequently look back at our own past and remember those times when we clearly saw God’s hand at work in our lives. Think of three times in your life that God came through for you, or protected you from something, or encouraged you when you really needed it. Tape a note to your mirror that will remind you of that event frequently. When you feel discouraged, ask yourself, “If God was trustworthy at these times in the past, why wouldn’t I trust him now?”
Focus on the Present
As Jesus reminded us, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough troubles of its own.” (Matthew 6:34 NIV) The job seeker’s work never seems done. There is always something more you could do. Instead of obsessing over what you are not doing, however, plan what you will do, do it, and let the rest go. Invite God into the day with you each morning. Ask God to set the pace and show you what is most important. Set one or two primary goals to accomplish that day, and discipline yourself to go back to them when you are tempted to browse websites for hours. Do your best to complete those main goals, but at the end of the day give the rest to God. If you have done your best, put the final outcome in God’s hands and get some sleep. The Lord created it to give you a break so that you can start fresh tomorrow.
Trust for the Future
Only God knows the final outcome of your job search. You can work hard and do your best, but you can’t control whether a company has an opening or whether a hiring manager decides to pick you. But if you have invited the Lord into your job search, you can know that he is actively at work, even when nothing seems to be happening. In my book Help Wanted, I call God the ultimate headhunter – the one recruiter that can not only find jobs but create them. In the end, the challenge of your job search will be this: can you trust that God is working in your life for his glory and your good? Try it. When you pray today give God the final outcome of your job hunt, and invite him into your new position before you even have it. Offer to be his steward wherever he places you.
If you find yourself in a tough job search, facing doubt and discouragement, invite God to be your companion in the journey. You’ll discover much more than just a job.