By John Oettinger.
The following was written about the time I experienced after being retrenched from the first job I held in Australia. It was written for a prayer journal at our former church that I contributed to. The title of the journal was: "When My World Collapsed".
'I'm sorry, there's no position for you.'
I didn't hear much of the rest of the interview, no, more of a monologue from the CEO ending my 20-year career, in a job I loved and with a company I respected and valued. At 46, with a mortgage and a family to support, my safe, secure world had just collapsed. To add 'insult to injury', I was asked to stay on till the end of the month to oversee a stock take in preparation to hand over to the new owners. I could have walked out then as others did that day, but chose to stay on. As hurt, confused, scared of the future as I was, I still valued my dignity and wanted to leave on my terms.
'The keys are here anytime.'
This was how a dear friend offered the use of their holiday house, an offer I decided to take to get away and try to clear my head after leaving the company. The emotions of fear, hurt, grief, uncertainty, and thoughts of "why me", needed some space to be unpacked.
A combination, of rest, exercise, quiet time, prayer, reading, all helped to restore some sense of normality after the 'blur' of the last month. One day I decided to go for a walk. It was overcast, windy and with heavy squalls of rain, a bit like the turmoil that would ebb and flow in me.
I reached the crest of the sand-dune and stood gazing out over Bass Strait. The power of nature was incredible. As I stood reflecting, I felt a strange calmness in the midst of the storm I was watching; it was as if the elements were trying to take away all the hurt, confusion, and fear I was trying to understand.
In the midst of the storm, the voice was clear,
'Trust me…..It will be okay'.
At that moment, I resolved and trusted that there was something for me in the future. I didn't know what, where, how or when. I just knew it would happen. I went back to the house, relaxed, cooked a meal and that night slept soundly for the first time in months.
There were a few knockbacks but armed with the resolve and trust experienced overlooking the storm before me, a new job came a few months later and was to last almost 20 years as my first job had.