A DIFFICULT DECISION
During a recent Bible study, we
were asked to share reflections on our lives since last Thanksgiving. I
pondered the question and realized that I have a lot to be thankful for.
Several months ago, my boss
approached me and asked if I would consider relocating to the main office after
my contract expired in December. I was lukewarm about the idea because I
realized that if I were to accept the offer, I would have to live hours away
from the closest church. It would be difficult to sustain such a long commute
to observe Sabbath every week. I asked my boss to give me more time to think
about it. I also asked him to help me explore other job opportunities that
would not require relocation.
As the last day of my contract
drew closer, I began to realize that management would not allow me to work away
from the main site. The choice came down to this: If I were willing to relocate
to the main site, I would have little trouble transitioning from a long-term
supplemental position to a permanent position. I would also be given priority
to move to other internal openings, if I so desired. However, if I chose not to
relocate, I would be on my own.
This was a difficult decision to
make. I postponed the decision as much as I could, hoping that with the extra
time a compromise could be found.
I found it hard to leave a company
that offered me a stable job. As a young engineer, I benefit both
professionally and intellectually by learning from colleagues.
When I realized what leaving meant
for my career, I was not sure of what I would do. I knew all along that I
needed to put God first, but I was not sure if I had the courage to do what was
right. For several weeks, my wife and I prayed for God’s guidance, hoping that
He would open a way for us to work and stay close to church for our spiritual
We finally reached a decision
several weeks later. We realized that, even though relocating to the main site
would be good for my career, we couldn’t rely on that potential because nothing
in this world is certain. We both agreed that moving far away from church would
not be good for either of our spiritualities in the long run.
Thinking through the problem and
realizing what needed to be done was relatively easy. My wife and I decided
that we did not want to move unless it was absolutely necessary. The difficult
part was finding a job that would allow me to stay close to home.
I felt depressed as the end of my
contract approached—I had a lot of work to do in addition to the unpleasant
task of finding another job. I was so busy that I didn’t have time to prepare
for interviews. I knew I made the right decision in choosing not to move, but I
was afraid of the consequences of not being able to find a job close to home. I
worried that I had been too stubborn by insisting on where I wanted to work.
About two months before the last
day of my contract, I saw a job posting for a company close to home. It was a
pleasant surprise, because there had not been a start-up in the area for years.
I submitted my résumé online right away and made a mental note to drive by the
company on my way home that night.
Before the day was over, I got a
call from the hiring manager. He had seen my résumé and wanted to know if I
could stop by in two days.
Two days later, I went to the
company for an interview. They asked me questions on technical subjects that I
had not studied in a long time. I was disappointed after the interview because
I did fine but not as well as I needed to secure a job offer. I wished that I
could have studied some more before the interview.
By the end of that day, I was
certain that I would never hear from the company again. I comforted myself with
the thought that I could at least treat this interview as practice and take lessons
away from it for the next interview.
About a week later I was pleasantly
surprised when I received an email from the hiring manager. They were satisfied
with my interview and indicated that they would like to proceed to salary
I am very thankful for God’s
guidance throughout my job search. There was a moment of shock and disbelief
when I realized that my future with my previous company was about to come to an
end. There was a moment of uncertainty when I realized that companies that I
wanted to apply to were too far away. There was a moment of sadness when I
cleaned my cubicle late into the night.
Finally, there was a moment of vanity
when I realized that, even though I had worked long and hard, coming home late
at night and working on Sundays in an office without air conditioning, I had to
leave everything behind.
But there were also moments of peace
when I realized that I made the right decision by not accepting a job that
would take me far away from a church that has been like a home to me.
Regardless of the cost, I felt great peace with my decision because I knew it
was the right one.
There were moments of thanksgiving
when I realized that God provided me with a job despite my not exactly acing my
technical interviews. I was fully aware that, given the state of the industry,
I could not expect to keep the same job until my retirement thirty-five years
from now. I am thankful for all that I have learned during the time I was with
my previous company.
I am thankful because I did not suffer
weeks of unemployment and started work at my new job right after my contract
This experience has given me more
faith for the future. I have no idea what will happen a few years from now, but
I know that as long as I continue to put faith in God and focus on doing what
is right, He will somehow provide a way.
It will not always be easy. But as it
says in Philippians 4:13,
I can do all things through Christ who