The phone rings.
It’s unexpected bad news.
What goes through your mind first?
I got a call from my boss. My hours are being cut from 12 guaranteed hours/week (sometimes I work up to 20-23 hours/week as a pharmacist) to 3 hours/week in 2 weeks.
We are still waiting to hear if my husband’s job will have furloughs this year or not.
The last time this happened, I was a pharmacist part time at Walgreens. It was the week before Christmas. I found out on the way to my shift that suddenly “there aren’t enough hours for you anymore.” I went from 24 hours/week to 8 hours/week. We had already bought Christmas gifts and the week after Christmas, both of our children had birthdays. We had to take gifts back to the store.
I was devastated that time for 3 days. Then, I began to trust God.
But, somehow, in the process, my reaction wounded my husband. It was a very difficult time for him.
NOW I GET A DO-OVER
I don’t mind cutting unnecessary purchases from our budget. It doesn’t bother me if we don’t go to restaurants or on vacations. Thankfully, we learned a lot about being more frugal the last time my hours were cut.
My biggest concern is – I desire to handle the situation this time in a way that supports and honors my husband’s drive to provide financially for our family – and in a way that most honors my Lord.
I TALKED TO OUR CHILDREN
When we got home yesterday, I took our children to God’s Word. We read the passages below and got down on our knees together and prayed for God’s will for our family.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. For those God foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those He predestined, He also called; those He called, He also justified; those He justified, He also glorified. What then shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:28-31
WHERE IS GOD?
He is RIGHT HERE with me! Each day is an adventure – what will He do next? What surprises does He have in store? I thank and praise Him for the faith He has worked in my heart that is not wavering.
I am not panicking.
I am not freaking out.
This time – I didn’t even cry. Although that would be a normal reaction – and we will often have emotions to work through, especially when we first face bad news.
I am thankful.
I am hopeful.
I am expectant.
I am full of His peace – which is totally from Him – not from me at all.
I can’t wait to see what my amazing God is about to do.
WHAT CAN BE GOOD ABOUT LOSING A HUGE PART OF OUR INCOME?
- What if God wants us to learn to depend on Him more fully and this is the path to a deeper faith?
- What if God wants to use me as a godly example to others of living in faith during a trial?
- What if God has things for us to learn as a couple, as a family, or for me individually as a believer that I can only learn in difficulty?
- What if His will includes suffering? Actually, I know that it will include suffering – His Word promises that! I thank and praise God that He is able to use problems and difficulties and suffering and even persecution to make my faith more mature and to make me more like Jesus.
- What if God has a door for me that I wouldn’t have seen if this door had not been shut?
- God uses trials to help us see where our faith is. How strong is my faith, really? It must be tested and refined by fire. I willingly yield myself to the tests.
- This is an incredible opportunity to live out my faith and to trust God’s sovereignty.
I yield myself daily to God as fully as I know how. I am totally Yours, Lord! I seek Your greatest glory with my life! I want only Your will and I want all of Your good, pleasing and perfect will!
God’s ways are infinitely higher than my own.
He alone knows the plans He has for me. He is already in my future. He knows the way to His will. I do not! So I trust Him and am willing to follow Him wherever He will lead me.
PLEASE PRAY WITH ME FOR:
1. God to be greatly glorified and His Name to be highly exalted in my life
2. Me to walk deeper and deeper in my faith in Him and to trust Him more fully
3. My husband and I to have the mind of Christ, to be united, to seek Him both individually and together with even greater passion and desire for Him than ever before
4. Our children to witness a godly example of dealing with trials that will give them wisdom, strength, direction and hope in the future
5. God to direct our steps and give us light for each day
6. Wisdom for my husband to lead us as God desires him to
7. That our example might honor God and draw others to a deeper faith in Him
8. That we might rest peacefully in God’s love and provision
9. That God might direct my steps and my career according to His will alone
10. That we might be sensitive to God’s voice and quick to obey no matter what He asks of us