I was brought up in Christian Science and over the years have witnessed many occasions when needs have been met through prayer. Therefore, when I found myself suddenly without a job but with two sets of school fees and rent to pay, it was natural to turn to God.
My career, the house we were living in, and the children’s schools had all seemed like gifts from God, so when anxiety tempted me, I held on to this Bible text: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (James 1:17).
Another Bible text that I treasured as I prayed to remove all self-will and self-doubt was, “There is a path which no fowl knoweth, and which the vulture’s eye hath not seen” (Job 28:7). When tempted to map things out, instead I rejoiced that God’s paths are far above our planning and that all His ways are perfect.
A precious insight I gained during this time came as I read the phrase, “Without perfection, nothing is wholly real” (Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 353). As “the scientific statement of being” reminded me each week in church, “Spirit is the real and eternal; matter is the unreal and temporal” (Science and Health, p. 468). I understood that the material details of our current situation—our interesting work, lovely home, and other possessions—were the manifestation of a spiritual, perfect gift from God in whom there is no shadow of turning. This enabled me to let go of anxiety and fear. If our current situation was the manifestation of the perfection of God’s spiritual gift, which would never be taken from me, then I could be confident that its next manifestation, though it might be different, would be no less perfect.
As I completed job application after job application, I held steadfastly to the thought that I wanted God’s will, not mine, to be done. Every job application was submitted in a spirit of enquiry: “God, is this the work You want me to do next?” And I accepted each rejection letter with the thought, “OK, so that wasn’t it. Show me where to go next.” During this time I was led to reassess my skills and the kind of work I would like to do. Looking back, I can see that each application was a preparation for the next, so that when I was finally offered a job more wonderful than any I had seen advertised, I was ready to take it.
The process took a number of months, during which I undertook consultancy work and was never out of paid employment. After six months, during an interview for one position, I was offered the opportunity to work on a different project. I accepted it with joy, and it has been a more interesting and professionally satisfying job than anything I could have imagined. The working environment is perfect, we have been able to stay in our home, and the children have stayed in their schools. My work has already provided me with opportunities to bless several other individuals. The lack of security, which might have put me off had I been offered this post at the beginning of my job search, was and is not a problem, as I rejoice that my real security lies in the existence of an ever-loving God.
At the end of the project, another role opened up close to home for which my experience had perfectly prepared me. Had the project not ended when it did, I would not have been in a position to apply for the post. The work is challenging and enjoyable, my colleagues congenial, and the location perfect—a further manifestation of the generosity of the ever-loving Father.
I am so grateful that my children have experienced the fullness of God’s generous provision. In later years they will remember that reliance on God brings joy-filled resolution and that the results are better than anything our limited human planning might have outlined. Surely “my cup runneth over … and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever” (Psalms 23:5, 6).