IT’S DECEMBER 23 AS I write this; time for the traditional “Bragging Rights” basketball game between the University of Missouri and the University of Illinois. It’s college basketball at its best. I didn’t go to either school, but loving college basketball and growing up in St. Louis, it’s just a game you have to watch. Before they even have a sweat up, Missouri is behind, and it keeps getting worse. Time outs are called to make those quick adjustments to break the momentum. Halftime in a game is when adjustments are made, minor and/or major based on how the game is going.

This time in your life might be your “halftime,” time to think about and consider adjustments. You’ve probably had many successes in your career so far, but this period of unemployment most likely wasn’t part of your planning. Instead of just picking up and moving on to do the same thing you’ve been doing with a different company, you have some time available to pause and reflect. Ask yourself some important questions about your life, your work, and where you are going. A good friend of mine told me about a book called “Halftime” by Bob Buford that I purchased early in my unemployment and read. It’s excellent, and I encourage you to read it too. It will help you look at where you are, what you are good at, and what you want to do with the rest of your working life. What will your priorities be?

Asking these questions doesn’t necessarily mean you need to change your career; then again, this might be the time. This might be a time God has given you to reevaluate your priorities and to steer you in a different direction. Or he might use this time to reenergize you. My prayer is that you are open to considering that God might be ready to use the special gifts he’s given you in ways different than you had previously imagined.

Throughout the Bible, we find people who were quite content in what they were doing until God said, “I have other plans for you.” Moses learned that.

And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt. Exodus 3:9-10.

The Apostle Peter thought he’d spend his life as a fisherman until Jesus told him to stop his fishing and come with him.

As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen.  “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him. Matthew 4:18-20

My encouragement for you is to stay in dialog with God and use this time to think about the future and what’s next for you.

This week’s blog is an excerpt from How Long, O Lord, How Long? Devotions for the Unemployed and Those Who Love Them , By author Dale Kreienkamp.

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