You are about to graduate and are wondering, now what? Its been a long slog, there have been highs and lows and yet it has all seemed to go by so fast. You're fast approaching the day you have waited for the majority of your young life, and fear and anxiety are mingled with all the excitement.
There are two fundamental truths that you should hold on to during the next few months as you begin life after school.
1. Romans 8: 28 – And we know that all things work together for good to those called according to his purpose. When the Bible says “all things” it means just that. Yes, even the rejection you will receive from companies you long to work for and the long months that will pass before you find a job. All these things will be working together for your good and will be working towards “His purpose” for your life. The Lord may be teaching you something or may want you to become aware of something or may even want you to do something for him before he gives a job that will keep you too busy to serve him. So even in times of despair always hold on to this truth. This experience is a strengthening your faith.
2. 1 Cor 10:31 – Whatever you do, do as unto the Lord. Secondly, when you finally do find something to do no matter how trivial it may seem remember to do it diligently as “unto the Lord.” This applies even to voluntary jobs. Do them as unto the Lord. You never know who you may be impressing. When you do get a job you must be dependable, show dedication by giving 100%. Do not join unbelievers as they complain and gossip about their superiors. You are Christ’s ambassador in the work place, not the chief complainant (2 Tim 2:15).
- Put God first – He knows what is best for you and his ways are not your ways nor his time your time. Pray about your situation earnestly. Ask others to pray with and for you. We often underestimate the power of prayer.
- Patience – You are dealing with an unknown time frame. It could take one day or one year. Be prepared to face it.
- Purity – You may face times of extreme temptation. There are a lot of wrong things happening out there. You will be told it depends on whose hands you oil etc. Do not act like unbelievers (Hebrews 11:1).
- Perseverance – Many give up too quickly. Do not stop trying until the very last door is shut and bolted. Make an effort to see employers in person when you leave application letters.
- Be Practical – If the only job available is in a rural area, take it. We have a tendency of shunning rural areas. The Lord may be sending you as a missionary (Isaiah 6:8, Romans 10:14-15). It is also easier to find a job when you are in a job.
- Do not be Proud – You have a qualification by the grace of God. Do not look down on those who have not been as fortunate. Pride stops us from taking up jobs we consider below us when in fact it is actually very beneficial if we start from the bottom in an organization. That way we learn more than any qualification can ever teach us. Do not ignore workmates below you. They probably know more than you do about the organization and you may need their help (Proverbs 29:23, Proverbs 16:18).
- Plan – Don’t function haphazardly. Organize your time constructively. Have a list of all the organizations you are targeting. Give yourself deadlines for the delivery of applications etc. Set goals. Do something! Even growing vegetables is better than doing nothing.
Nine Tips For Job Hunting
- Collect correct and adequate information- Do not rely on hearsay from friends. Some friends may deliberately mislead you so make an effort to find or verify information for yourself. Check papers daily if possible.
- Learn to ask for business cards, keep peoples telephone numbers, email addresses and learn to network.
- Where possible drop off applications in person. The postal system is not the most reliable.
- Be observant and attentive - the church is a resource center, but many youths do not know or care to know what older church members do.
- Be objective – if you are trained as a teacher and there is an advert for a teaching job, do not snub it for a managerial job which has not been advertised. Be ready to enter an organization at the lowest level.
- Know your own strengths and weaknesses. Know what type of job you will enjoy doing.
- Be ready to volunteer. Volunteering is one way of learning skills or even getting a job later. It is also a way of giving back to society.
- Learn how to write professional curriculum vitae (CV) and application letters. This is the first impression that would-be employers will have about you. Employers have been known to receive application letters written in SMS lingo.
- Understand what is required when one is sitting for job interviews.
Now that you have finished your studies take time out and return to the starting point. Go back to your parents/guardians and say THANK YOU. Do not only do it verbally but show them that you are truly grateful for their support by working around the house. Let them send you around the way they used to when you were younger. Learn to be useful to those nearest to you before offering yourself as someone’s employee. Remember that this may be the last time you spend time in their home as you are soon to make your own home (Exodus 20:12).
In whatever situation you find yourself in the few months after graduating, remember Romans 8:28. Whatever it is that you are going through it is for your good.
by Mrs W. S. Nchito