In 54 days, I’ll don academic robes, hear Pomp and Circumstance, walk, and descend the commencement platform unemployed and out of control of my future.
And that’s exactly what I need. In the files of my mind, under the heading “job hunting,” at some point in the past, I flipped heaven and earth upside down.
All the scaffolding I put in place to make it seem like I’m in control—things like job security, a solid resume, a name school, a steady paycheck, retirement planning—those things obscure the fact (that fact I fight so desperately!) that every day I depend on You for my daily bread.
It’s deep in my planning nature: I want to know where tomorrow’s bread is coming from. I want all the scaffolding in place. I want control.
And that walk down from the commence platform reminds me that it’s the daily bread I need.
I’m not a fan of daily bread. Why? Well, something in the pit of my heart made its way to the top and turned it all upside down when it started asking that pragmatic question: what if You just don’t come through with the daily bread tomorrow? That’s a lot of trust You’re asking for. It’s a scary option, but it’s the only game in town. The soul can only live on daily bread.
In my mind, it’s flipped upside down, this job hunt. Somewhere along the way, it morphed from what it truly is into a shadow. It spun upside down, and I started to see this unemployed time as an uncomfortable, rickety bridge between the times of self-sufficiency (read: self-delusion); that uncomfortable space when I had to face the fact that I’m not God. Unemployment makes it so inescapable, so blindingly clear that I have no choice but to depend on You.
And what a relief that becomes when it turns right-side up. How laughable that it seemed like a chore—what a terrible time, this post-graduation uncertainty: suddenly, instead of depending on all the power of a foolish, finite, 24-year-old girl, I have to depend on the Treasury of Good Things and Giver of Life, Creator of the Heavens and the Earth.
When it all turns right-side up, I can breathe easy. Nothing in this life is about this life; everything is about beginning the life of heaven. My job hunt is a prayer—a faithful, patient dispensing of applications—for which finding a job is only of secondary importance. The one real goal of my job hunt is learning how to depend on You. Right-side up, my job hunt is already successful, and will grow more and more successful.
So, I’ll let go. Today, I don’t need what You’ll give me tomorrow. My daily bread will come when I need it. And, if every day for the rest of my life, I wake up without knowing where that bread is coming from, I can still know it’s coming from You. My job hunt will have been successful if it does nothing but teach me to live at peace with daily bread.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.