Beep Beep Beep! It is 4:30 PM and my alarm is going off. I search for my alarm while I am half asleep and hit the snooze button. I think to myself “Just ten more minutes” before I go back to sleep. Beep Beep Beep! It is 4:40 PM and my alarm goes off again. I search for my alarm to turn it off and get up. As I sit at the edge of my bed, I think, “Alright, I can do this.”
I check my phone to see if I missed any calls and send a text message to my husband to say “I hope you are having a good day. I miss you. I love you :)”. Since I work nights and he works days, the only time we get to see each other is when he comes to pick me up from work in the morning 15 minutes before he has to be at work, and when I pick him up from work in the evening 15 minutes before I have to be at work.
It is 6:45 PM and I after I give my husband a kiss, a hug, say my good bye, and give our dog a pat on the head, I leave to start my shift at the hospital. While I wait my turn to get on the elevator, I think of how blessed I am because of all the opportunities I have to be a light to people around me, whether it is having patience with difficult patients or telling my co-workers about the Truth.
Matthew 5:14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden”
While there are pros and cons to working, it is hard at times. There are days when my husband comes to pick me up and he can tell it was a hard night at work by the look on my face. It is those days he holds my hand and says, “Just a little while longer.” In addition, I get frustrated when I start to read my Bible or pray, but cannot concentrate because I am too tired, I hate not seeing my husband except for about 30 minutes a day, and I feel horrible when I have to rush out of Bible Class one minute after the closing prayer to make it to work on time. It is also hard when I fail to do what is right, do not have a good attitude, and let others at work influence how I act and react to situations.
Nevertheless, there are days when I leave work with a smile on my face because I had a great night at work. I had the opportunity to plant seeds or share the Good News. After all, there is a mission field at work and my co-workers need to hear about what Christ has done, just the same as someone in a foreign country.
There are many reasons why a Christian woman may go to work. Whether it is to help pay off debt or help support the family, it can be hard, and we need encouragement sometimes. After all, our goal for ourselves along with other Christians is the goal of heaven. Let us all consider a couple of things whether we work or not and encourage each other with these thoughts:
Let us be reminded of what really matters in this life. It is easy to get distracted by the things we have to do for work that takes time away from our relationship with God, but our relationship with God is the what matters most in this life and what matters the most in the one to come. It is important to spend time with God each day, to grow in knowledge and understanding. It is important to put Him first in everything, including our time.
Psalms 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God.”
It is also easy to get distracted by the things we have to do for work that takes time away from our family. Before I married my husband, I would have considered myself to be a “workaholic.” I would give more time to work than to our relationship. I would not leave work at work, but instead bring work home and even cancel plans with him or others because I thought work was more important. I had to learn to value my relationship with my husband and with others and value the time we spent together. There is always work to be done, but there will not always be time with one another, so make the most of it while you can.
Grow where you are planted and do the best with the opportunities you have. For Christian women who have to work it is hard to be able to do every thing you want, simply because you do not have time. An older Christian sister encouraged me with the words written above when I was frustrated that I could not do more for, and with the church. She told me that although I did not have a lot of time to spend with Christians outside of Bible Class and Worship, I could write cards to members of the church to encourage them. I decided I would do what she suggested and I wrote cards to members as I had time to encourage them and let them know I was thinking about them. They were encouraged and in turn I was encouraged because I felt like I took part in the work of the church by encouraging members of the church. I write about this not to pat myself on the back, but to encourage women who have to work to think of what they can do instead of what they cannot.
Lastly, but most importantly. Let our goal as Christian women, wives, and mothers be to fulfill our spiritual role first before we fulfill a role in the work force and do what God has asked first, before what our manager insists.
Titus 2:4-5 says older women are to teach younger women “to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.” Let us not lose sight of this command as we fulfill additional roles in the workforce.
By Kerstin Allison
Kerstin and her husband Britton were sent by the North MacArthur church of Christ to work with the Central Avenue Church of Christ in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. They have committed to encourage the Christians there and to evangelize to the lost souls in the community there. Kerstin works as a nurse and is finishing getting her R.N. degree.