First posted on 6th November 2017
‘How’s work going?’ ‘Have you had work this week?’
*Deep breath* ‘No, no I haven’t.’
I wait for the judgement…it never comes from the friend but only from myself as I try and move the conversation on quickly to avoid any more embarrassment.
Since being in Helsinki, I have had a few days work as a substitute teacher and teaching at a language club but it has not been as frequent as expected. After a lot of personal defiance, I’ve come to discover this as a precious time to learn about trusting God for he knows what provision I need.
Volunteering for a church plant and dedicating time to learn more about Jesus for a whole year required sacrifice. Having a steady income provided by my job as a primary school teacher produced a comfortable lifestyle and I was happy with my career achievements. I chose to pause my career progression because I know my faithful God has a plan for my future which would not be compromised due to loving others in a different nation.
However, I underestimated how this would affect me in more ways than just my bank account.
In short, if I didn’t care what people think, I would not be stressed about working frequently. I have needed to learn not to put my identity in my job stability, but be confident in how God views me. If, like I do, you put all your efforts into your job it's natural to then find your worth in the successes you achieve. But when this is stripped away, I need to be confident that I will still be standing assured of who I am in Christ. I am loved. God has an individual, cherished purpose for me to rejoice in.
Those who know me well will understand how I’m feeling when I say ‘I’m struggling without routine’. I love organising my diary, keeping to routines and basically being in control. However, sometimes God doesn’t provide all the details and give the answers on a plate because we would then loose the need for faith.
I’ve come on a battling journey, but I can now be thankful for the time I have to reflect and refine my character so I can be ready for mission and living the life God has in store for me. So here’s to the next few months of adhoc work and finding joy in an unstructured diary.
I’d like to add that since writing this blog post, I’ve had opportunity to work at a language club four hours a week which will provide regular income – praise God! Since securing this job, I’ve felt so at peace about my financial situation. It’s been a journey where God’s shown how he provides when we persist in prayer and realign our hearts to be committed to fully rely on him.