Questions and Answers: I am really struggling right now to find work.

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I am really struggling right now to find work.

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While I know I am not alone, and that self-pity will not get me anywhere, it does get hard—which is why it was so encouraging to read your article “Work: It’s More Than Just a Job ” in the January-February issue. There were such wonderful reminders of how God takes care of us but also requires us to work hard to find work.

- Reader on the Internet

Answer

We are saddened to hear of your financial and health trials. God allows us to be tested by difficult circumstances that come upon us, sometimes through no fault of our own. But God can use these situations to increase our faith, patience and compassion for others (James 1:3 James 1:3Knowing this, that the trying of your faith works patience.
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; 1 Peter 1:7 1 Peter 1:7That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perishes, though it be tried with fire, might be found to praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
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Learning to rely on God through hardship while doing our part in faithful obedience helps prepare us for God’s coming Kingdom (Romans 8:28 Romans 8:28And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
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). The apostle Paul learned that “we must through many tribulations enter the Kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22 Acts 14:22Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.
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It’s helpful to recall a little-known biblical passage that can be quite encouraging in difficulties hard to fully understand. The prophet Habakkuk received news so terrible that it took away all of his strength. He felt as though there was no way he could go on. But then his outlook changed. As he explained:

“When I heard this message, I felt weak from fear, and my lips quivered. My bones seemed to melt, and I stumbled around … Fig trees may no longer bloom, or vineyards produce grapes; olive trees may be fruitless, and harvest time a failure; sheep pens may be empty, and cattle stalls vacant—but I will still celebrate because the Lord God saves me. The Lord gives me strength. He makes my feet as sure as those of a deer, and he helps me stand on the mountains” (Habakkuk 3:16-19 Habakkuk 3:16-19 16 When I heard, my belly trembled; my lips quivered at the voice: rottenness entered into my bones, and I trembled in myself, that I might rest in the day of trouble: when he comes up to the people, he will invade them with his troops. 17 Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labor of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: 18 Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. 19 The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk on my high places. To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.
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, Contemporary English Version). Thinking about God’s promises bolstered his faith.

And consider further: The several analogies about crops are ways to illustrate the trial of losing one’s income. Since seed for the next year’s crop came from this year’s harvest, crop failures also symbolized a seemingly hopeless future. Similarly, as long as a rancher had some livestock, he could survive by eating the meat. Any remaining animals he could use for breeding stock to build up his herd again. Empty pens, however, meant there was no obvious way back from financial collapse apart from reliance on God. Yet Habakkuk had faith, knowing that God would take care of him.

Please also keep the following passage in the book of Psalms firmly in mind. King David experienced many trials during his life, but he relied on God. He wrote, “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all” (Psalms 34:19 Psalms 34:19Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivers him out of them all.
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Sometimes faith requires a lot of patience. The apostle James asks us to “take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience. Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful” (James 5:10-11 James 5:10-11 10 Take, my brothers, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. 11 Behold, we count them happy which endure. You have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
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Recall that severe trials came on Job that deeply perplexed this righteous man. But God used these afflictions to raise Job’s level of spiritual understanding and his relationship to his Creator to a much higher level. His divine deliverance was accompanied by abundant blessings of every kind.

God will deliver you if you continue to put your trust and faith in Him. To learn how faith can be increased, request our free Bible study aid booklet You Can Have Living Faith . We are praying that you will continue to have the faith to carry on, always seeking God’s will in these difficult matters. We will ask our Creator and Helper to rescue you. 

Thank you for your message, and we are glad to learn that The Good News article about work was helpful. Please keep in touch and let us know how you are faring.