I’ve recently been made redundant from a wonderful job that I thoroughly enjoyed. Unsurprisingly, a change like this have given me time to think about life, my priorities and myself. Two significant themes have emerged worthy of sharing because they are applicable reminders for us all I think at any stage in life.
The first is our identity. Who do we profess to be and what would others say about what makes us stand out from the crowd?
It is of course easy to identify oneself through the brands we wear, the programmes we watch, the friends we socialize with. All of these are, however, transient. Great friends of course can last a lifetime, but those are rare jewels. The friend we have in Jesus is ever lasting and transformational. The ‘light’ and passion observed in someone who has just committed their life to Jesus is memorable. What a shame we can lose that spark over time, and thus our identity in Him becomes dampened.
In Ephesians we are described as “God’s masterpiece” (Ephesians 2:10). Now that is a tall order if we look at a dictionary definition of a ‘masterpiece’. A masterpiece is something of excellence. Probably not what I first felt and thought of myself as I lost my job. How can I be a ‘masterpiece’ if I’m unemployed? But I am God’s masterpiece and that is my identity to be proud of. It is not what job I hold that identifies me, nor the identity I have at the school gate of “Sophie and Hannah’s Mum”, but that there is an immeasurably more important identity that I have in Christ. Wow! We are so privileged to have been chosen in this way, and it should make us rejoice in such massive security.
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations Jeremiah 1:5
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9
The second area is somewhat related, and that is who is in control of my life. Redundancy came as a shock and it leaves uncertainty with regards to where the pennies will come from to sustain us and the lifestyle we have become accustomed to. However one good Christian friend said to me very soon after my redundancy “you know this wasn’t a surprise for God because he has your life planned out and it is all in His plan for you”. Whilst I cannot agree to all Joseph Campbell has said, this quote sums it up well;
“We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” — Joseph Campbell
So the challenge now is to trust God, and to be patient to discover what He has in store for us next. In the meantime God has given us the gift of more family time together to enjoy this beautiful land of Switzerland, to invest in friendships and enjoy just being. Again a wonderful quote from Joseph Campbell to end on:
“The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are”.
What a blessing it is that we are made as Children of God, and that he doesn’t forsake us, but has our lives mapped out and under control. Praise the Lord!
1 See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 1 John 3:1-2
Finally if, like me, you worship through music, I urge you to reflect on my missives by listening to the beautiful song by Twila Paris “God is in Control”.