04 2017

Diaconate Testimony

Last spring and summer I found a community at Redeemer that helped me navigate through what felt like one of the darkest periods of my life professionally, personally and spiritually. Last February to August, almost every Thursday, I took the F train to Bryant Park, walked a couple blocks to Redeemer’s midtown office and joined Diaconate’s Job Search Round Table.

While I attended Redeemer every Sunday and was an active member of my Community Group, the Round Table provided a sense of community that supplemented Sunday service and my Community Group. At Round Table, I spoke openly and freely with other job seekers about the trials and tribulations of job search, without secretly wondering in the back of my mind if the person I was talking to thought something was wrong with me because I wasn’t employed. Round Table also provided spiritual guidance specifically designed for job seekers. I remember attending Round Table for the first time and feeling like I was having my first drink of water after wandering through a desert. (I should’ve paid better attention to Redeemer’s church bulletins! By the time I arrived at Round Table, I had already been looking for opportunities for quite some time.)

During my time at Roundtable, I learned two key lessons: 1) we are designed for certain jobs; 2) to stop being afraid and start trusting God. While those two lessons are very easy to write, they were very difficult to learn! It took a lot — and a different kind — of prayer to learn those lessons. Faith has always been important to me, but it wasn’t until I was going through over a year of being unemployed after having steady employment at many prestigious companies for almost 20 years that I prayed to God from the fierce belly of who I am to ask Him what was the right path for me. Over the years, I had taken a variety of personality tests to see what roles were right for me, but I never thought about it from the perspective of my faith and God’s plan for me.

God had to take me to a very scary place financially before I “woke up” and began to truly trust Him. In that moment of extreme financial discomfort, I finally realized that I was stopping myself in my own tracks from finding the right opportunity. In some ways, I was so scared to return to the workforce that I was self-sabotaging my own search process. It’s not until I let go of that fear and started truly trusting God that I found the right opportunity.

This past winter I did that same walk from the Bryant Park F train stop to Redeemer’s office, but this time to give my talk as a Job Search Roundtable alumnus. My eyes began to water with tears of joy as I came closer to Redeemer’s lobby. God provided the right role for me in His own time.

Thank you to the Redeemer Diaconate for the Job Search Round Table Community and praise God for his faithfulness!

The Redeemer Diaconate provides practical assistance and holistic care to those with needs in our congregations. Please partner with us to keep this ministry of mercy going by providing a financial gift redeemer.com/mercygift.




Articles in this Issue

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Kathy Keller
 
Redeemer Lincoln Square Catalyst
Taylor Foran
 
Easter story of hope:  Steven Johnson, New York City Rescue Mission
 
Pulitzer Prize winning author Marilynne Robinson receives CFW inaugural Commission of Faith & Work
 
Diaconate Testimony
Name Withheld