This November has been a challenging one for my family. It’s difficult to be in a thankful mindset when nothing seems to be working out the way we wanted. We have now been in TX for almost 4 months and I haven’t been able to find a job. It’s been really stressful. I have applied to dozens and interviewed for 5 of those jobs. I just heard yesterday from the most recent – they chose a different candidate. It can be incredibly discouraging when you thought you had a really good resume (10 years office experience, half in the medical field and half in higher education) and yet no one will hire you.
So in the midst of this situation and our savings drying up, we are struggling to be thankful. It’s a hard lesson to learn and to teach. I sat in a bible study last week and found myself identifying with this passage from Exodus:
So Moses returned to the Lord and said, “Lord, why have You brought trouble on this people? Why is it You have sent me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, he has done evil to this people; neither have You delivered Your people at all.” Exodus 5:22-23
When we made the decision to move here, it was based on a lot of time and prayer. We have been striving to follow God’s path in our lives. And we both felt led to this community, to this university. It was not a decision made lightly. So now, when things are not turning out how we hoped, we find ourselves questioning everything. But as Moses points out in that passage, just because you’re doing God’s will doesn’t mean life gets easier. In fact, it may just end up more difficult! And as someone pointed out in our bible study, no where in the Bible does it say life will get easier when you follow God’s direction.
So we are learning thankfulness in a new way this year. We’re learning to be thankful for things we’ve taken for granted. The money to pay our bills, the kindness of family and friends, the abundance of warm weather so we don’t have to run our heat yet.We’re thankful for each other. We’re thankful for friends to spend this holiday with – and thankful for the food stamps we received so that we can purchase food to eat. I’m thankful that the stress of our finances has not caused a rift in my marriage. I’m praying that my children will learn from this situation as much as we are and will develop a stronger sense of gratitude.
And throughout all of this, we will continue to pray for God’s guidance.