Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of “All that Glitters is Not Gold” (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (01/24/08)
TITLE: My Perfect Job
By William Stevenson
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It had happened! The wonderful job that I had landed three years ago in the new town was now threatened. My salary had tripled in three years but now the company was to be liquidated for political reasons. It all seemed so unfair.
Because I now held a senior position in the company the directors wanted me to stay as long as I could. They would not stand in the way of any offers I had but hinted at loyalty. The first offer I had, came through the assistant accountant. He told me of a company that he had recommended me to, who would give me a greater salary than I was already receiving with generous annual leave and fully paid overseas leave every two years, including travel costs. Something many dream of but never get offered.
When he said, “It’s a job with the distillery.” The words of ‘The Great Judgment Morning’ went through my mind. “And the men who had sold them the drink, together in Hell they did sink.” No I would not take that job. “For what shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his soul.” The best salary package could not buy my soul; it had cost Jesus his life.
I went on looking for a job fully believing that God would work out all things together for my benefit. At last I found it! The perfect job! A farming company that owned four large farms whose managing director was an elder in his local church (not my denomination) but who cares. He told me their main operation was cattle and that I would have a free house on the home farm, an excellent salary, generous leave and would not need to leave the company I was with until they fully closed. Who could ask for anything more?
With such an offer I could be loyal to my current employers and still get a good job. It was the best of both worlds, or so it seemed. I served out my time with the old company and moved to the farm. This meant I could only attend my church at weekends but I was a mature Christian and was already evangelizing in the district around the farm.
Shock! Horror! I soon discovered that their main crop was tobacco.
This was very unsettling for me because when I had accepted Jesus as my Lord and savior he had set me free from my bondage to tobacco which had held me for over fourteen years. It compromised my testimony to be gaining my income from tobacco.
As I have told you I was enslaved to the nicotine demon having started smoking before I was six years old. I had tried many times to get free of the filthy habit and more especially since I had married because my wife was allergic to the smoke. But all to no avail until one night in prayer. As I was praising God for saving my soul and healing me of sinus headaches, I heard his voice say, “What about the sin in your pocket?”
I felt in my pocket and found my cigarettes and matches. I said, “Lord! You know I can’t give them up. I’ve tried many times.”
“It seemed God answered, “What if I help you?”
That night I threw my cigarettes away and have not smoked again in more than fifty years. There were no cravings for the power of the resurrected Jesus was my ability.
It was only a few years after my deliverance and my perfect job was now a nightmare. Why hadn’t I been more careful? Perhaps it seemed too good to be true. I tried for some time to find a new job without success. I now prayed to God to help me get out of the mess I had created and the next day I was terminated because the company was running out of funds. So I went on my way rejoicing that God, who had closed this door would open another.
During the time of my notice I did not find employment but the day after I left the farm I joined another company and was with them for many years. I guess I learned to look behind the cover then. What a gracious and patient God we serve.
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