After hearing back from Relevant Magazine about my article submission, then not hearing back the second time around, I’ve decided to post my article here. If Relevent does pick it up, I’ll let you know. Enjoy! Feedback welcome.
By Danny Burns
I had to do it. I analyzed, thought out numerous possibilities and arrived at a place of complete desperation. Facing a dwindling bank account and increasing college debt, I swallowed every ounce of pride and did it.
I took a job at Wal-Mart.
Now I know millions of people are employed at Wal-Marts throughout the country and enjoy what they do; big high-five for Sam Walton. But inevitably, all of us have had jobs we just don’t like. For me, it was during my senior year of college when I became a Wal-Mart cashier. Strapped for cash in a quaint college town, I “took one for the team,” donned the blue vest and plastered on a smile.
Whatever the reason, and there are many, my time at Wal-Mart still stands as the shortest employment I’ve had with a company. I knew I was in trouble when the over-riding theme of my days was figuring out how I could get out of work. I’d do anything to abandon my register.
I thought about “accidentally” dropping a palette on my feet or having a Huffy 10-speed fall on me from high atop the bike rack. I even thought about throwing myself in front of a line of moving carts. All of these thoughts, with the exception of the Huffy, were quickly dismissed. I’m a sissy.
After a few paychecks and 316 different possible ways to get out of work, I came up with a permanent solution. I handed in my two weeks notice, signed a few papers and never had to tend to a Wal-Mart register again.
This long forgotten memory resurfaced during a recent evening discussion with friends. The talk was about current events and currently the events can be a bit overwhelming. Natural disasters, terrorism, plane crashes, crime, political uprising, a questionable economy, and gas prices add to the mess. Some of my friends were discontent with the country, the government and the church. Needless to say I was a bit jaded as I walked to my car.
So how does a discussion about the world’s chaos have anything to do with the job I was always trying to get out of? Unlike myself and countless other slackers who try desperately to dump their responsibilities, God never abandons His post. He never calls in sick, never tries to come up with ways to get out of work; He loves His work because it’s His.
In Hebrews 13:5 it’s written that God says He will never leave us or forsake us. If we struggle to believe that verse then we should take a look at Romans 4:20 for the payoff. “Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.”
Flip on your local news, read a newspaper or browse the net and you’ll find a hundred other reasons not to believe God has the capability to do what He promises. It’s our nature to doubt, worry and fear. We look around at the events that unfold and we say “How can our God be here in the midst of all this?” But through the death and the destruction God teaches us. Our trials eventually lead to more peace and understanding about who God is and who He desires us to become. (Hebrews 12)
As we stand in the “checkout lane” of life, we throw all sorts of garbage on His register. No matter the struggles or the failures He remains willing and ready to get us through. For my sake and for our sake, I’m tremendously thankful God isn’t going to ever give us His “two weeks.”