Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Self Reliance

There is a sense in which constant job hunting becomes an exercise in futility and depression - like yesterday. It was one of my "better" days (better in the sense of numbers), but at the same time mentally exhausting because of the fact that at the end, I realized I hit most of my weekly sites as well - so the expectation is that in fact I will find very little for the rest of the week.

But it brings up a bigger issue, as I look at this morning with a half hour search done: how much am I relying on this versus relying on God?

I have found that it is a constant struggle to not confuse the fact that I am to be diligent with the fact that in the end, I cannot "make" a job appear. I can put out a stream of resumes every day, but in the end only God can provide me with the job.

But in reality, it is God who is ultimately providing me with the existence of getting through day to day right now. The bills are still paid, food is still on the table, everyone is in good health - funny, that all seemed to happen without me having a job right now. Like somehow, I'm not really in control of it.

Intellectually I can grasp this. Viscerally it is much more difficult: we are so trained to act, to do, make things occur (if you've worked in the recent past, you know the focus is on "follow-up" and "closeout"), that the idea that doing what we can and relying on someone else (in this case, God) without worry is unnerving to the point of concern. Partially it may stem from the fact that to do this in real life is to realize failure repeatedly (if you've ever relied on someone else to complete something for you and have them forget, you'll understand), but partially it probably stems from our own pride as well, the sense that "I can do what I want. I need not rely on others."

When the job comes (as it will), will I look back on this time and say I was able to relax and see God providing for us, or will I look back and say I spent a great deal of time worrying and being depressed and unhappy trying to accomplish something that was never truly in my ability to accomplish?

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