We live in a world of constant change, uncertainty and stress. When the economy is bad, individuals often live in a world of fear, stress and survival. Consequently, many people often will turn to God and the church when their livelihood is threatened by a real or perceived threat of job loss. Individuals in these situations have multiple, simultaneous spiritual, emotional, physical and employment related needs, which when left unmet, will spill over into other areas of their lives.
Trying to meet all of these needs can put an added burden on the church. However, the good news is that this is an opportunity for the church to shine (Eph. 3:9-10) and to be a salt and light (Matt 5:13-16). Two primary things the church can offer:
- Finding spiritual significance in difficult times
- Providing individuals with compassionate prayer and support. When lay church members have specialized training for understanding these needs, God can use that wisdom to help the church member know how to pray for, support, and mentor individuals seeking help.
- Informational Workshops for Unemployed Individuals and Adults in Career Transitions
- Workshops to give individuals the tools they need to identify where to find information, resources, and support so they can identify what steps they need to take next. These workshops are especially helpful for individuals who feel “lost”.
- Referrals – Referrals to resources available to address needs
- Individuals – Consultation available for individuals needing education and/or career guidance
- Training of lay leadership – Identifying and addressing multiple, simultaneous needs of individuals who need to take new career directions. (Video: Church involvement starts at 2.50 minutes)
- Training on issues related to education and career transition issues faced by those whom you serve: “Facilitating Career Development”
- Training in self-awareness:
- Minimizes the tendency to “project” one’s own needs or issues onto another person
- Facilitates the process of finding one’s calling in life
Kathleen’s Testimony is available upon request