Unemployment is such a miserable topic. We have watched news reports of rising unemployment all over the world, for several weeks now. The Greeks are in pain, the Spanish following hot on their heels, where many Africans undergo the same. What kind of world are we building? How did we get here? What are our priorities? How do we fix this?
I learned that a large group of friends and former colleagues were due to lose their jobs at the end of this month. The international company they work for, sold some years back and the new investors have chosen to send a youthful, highly competent, capable, well-trained and dynamic team on early retirement. For some, retirement comes in their early thirties. My first reaction was shock, then disbelief and now a sadness that I cannot shake off. I prayed for them, then made calls to as many as I could. It all seems unreal. One friend confided in me, telling me that she still has no idea whether she will leave this coming Tuesday or not. I prayed again with those I could and shared this with my husband. We met at this company and have a soft spot for that firm and especially for our friends and former colleagues.
Another friend shared, “It is harder to watch the reactions of those who know they are leaving, than to receive the news myself.” I put myself in her place and promptly agreed. One eighth of the staff are being retrenched. Many of them are middle managers, leaving the management team in place. Personally, I question the mode of retrenchment. It always begs the question, who is going to make sure continuity and actually do the work? I am certain the management have a plan at any rate.
Life is a blessing and with it comes seasons of joy and peace. At other times comes frustration and anxiety. We live with what we get. We struggle and grow. This is life for all living creatures. A young bird has to leave its nest eventually. Their first flights come with a dose of tough love and a shove out of the nest into the air. Tender plant shoots struggle out of the ground and strain to reach for air, sun and water. This is life – hard, knocks and all. Our Father God put it simply:
Testing of Your Faith
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,
In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials,
Tough times never last, but tough people do! After all you need a test, to have a testimony. I am thankful for these challenges and I hope you are too!