Joblessness is the norm for upwards of 15 million people in America. Most newspapers and media outlets across the land herald the 9.5% rate of unemployment. In itself, 9.5% is bad enough, but it does not begin to convey the full scope of the problem since it fails to include millions of Americans who have stopped looking for work. Over the past three months alone, more than a million new citizens have effectively given up hope of finding a job. An estimated six million people are no longer searching for work and have dropped out of the official 9.5% unemployment statistic. When included, they bring the total of unemployed Americans to upwards of 15 million people.
With each passing week their chances of finding work get slimmer. Official government spokesmen are finally stating what has been obvious to the vast majority of American citizens for a long time…our nation, our economy; our way of life is in desperate trouble. Our sluggish economy and hundreds of thousands of business closures and millions of layoffs have created a new class of American citizens, the “99ers.” The 99ers are people who have spent 99 weeks drawing jobless or unemployment benefits. Now that their 99 weeks are up and the benefits stop…they are at a loss as to where to turn.
The 99ers are real people with real stories and real families. Two years ago most of these people were in secure jobs. Those jobs ended. Most of them haven’t worked since. Most have been diligently looking for work, but are unable to find anything at all. Now, that 99 weeks have transpired, each is faced with the dilemma of what to do now. For millions, the American dream has ended. First they lost their jobs, followed by their homes, some lost their families, and then many lost their dignities. The one bright spot is that many have either already turned to, or is in the process of turning to the Lord.
Will the Lord guarantee someone a job, a house, a restored family, or a renewed sense of purpose and dignity? Not in every single case. But those who trust him, no matter how bleak their circumstances, will find a renewed sense of purpose and a God-given dignity that they so desperately need. What about a job, a house, or a family that has been made whole? He promises to guide you through those minefields and any others you may face. “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19. Carefully notice that he did say that he would supply all your “needs” not all your “wants.”
Back to this American dream; the American dream is basically a term used to describe a certain way of life. It is usually thought to include: a job with great benefits, a house, a car, an adequate retirement, and a generally happy and easy life. Know what? Many Americans and perhaps 85% of the rest of the world doesn’t have it anywhere near that good and would do almost anything to have it.
Christians, your real citizenship is in Heaven. The lyric of the old song rings true, “This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through.” What can you do? You can refocus your priorities from things that are temporary to things that are eternal. As many have witnessed, jobs, benefits, houses, cars, and retirement accounts are temporal. The Lord and his Kingdom of Heaven are eternal. Place your trust, your faith, your hope, and your future in Jesus.
He alone is worthy!