“Lord, if you help me find a job today, I promise I’ll never complain about going to work. I will go in every day with a smile on my face.”
Not all losses are the same but losing a job is close to the top, because it is painful on several levels. The loss of income is terrifying. Getting laid-off or fired hurts our pride. We mourn the separation from fellow employees whom we enjoyed collaborating with on interesting projects. We worry about how long it will take before we find another job and what it will be.
That job loss also can result in a snowball effect of more losses. From no longer being able to afford that special afternoon coffee to needing to move out of a cherished home and away from beloved neighbors, we lose much when we lose our source of income.
So, we pray. We don’t expect a free ride. We take control by promising something in return for what we need. We negotiate a deal.
Bargaining is a healthy and normal response to grief. It is a way to step out of the helplessness that results from sorrowful situations. We feel as if we are doing something to change the outcome.
Unfortunately, if things do not work out as we hope, we may become angry or depressed, which also are steps in the grieving process. We need to grieve. As painful as it is, we must work through our sadness.
As Christians, we can trust in God’s love, mercy, and reasoning. We place our fears and worries before the Lord and allow God to do what’s best even if the answer to our prayer may be that we don’t get what we want.