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praying for a new job September 11, 2009

Posted by That Guy in Getting Hired.
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CC-licensed photo by TheAlieness GiselaGiardino²³

CC-licensed photo by TheAlieness GiselaGiardino²³

I’m generally not a religious person — if anything, I’d like to believe in reincarnation, that we get to keep going around until we get it exactly right… or, better, that each time through we complete various quests, like in an RPG, until we’ve won all the mini-games and collected all the key items. Then we can watch the ending FMV and move on.

But these days, people are turning more and more to prayer as they face job loss, unemployment, furloughs, and pay cuts.

On Tuesday, one of my Facebook friends had a job interview. On Monday, his wife (also a Facebook friend) exhorted everyone on her friends list to pray for him.

Look, I have nothing against the guy, but let’s be honest: an all-powerful being would have much bigger fish to fry than my friend’s job interview. Like, oh, world hunger, Darfur, climate change, abused children… I could go on. I really could. In the grand scheme of things, my friend’s interview is pretty low on the totem pole.

I happen to know that the two of them believe in an all-powerful, all-knowing deity. That means the deity (a) knows my friend needs a job (b) my friend has been out of work for almost four months (c) there are plenty of problems in the world that require a deity’s attention. Another friend who follows the same faith has told me he believes “God has given us all the power to solve our own problems and change our situations for the better. He doesn’t expect us to just sit around and wait for him to fix things.” Now that’s a deity I could get behind. If I believed in one.

I don’t pray anymore, and I haven’t for a long time*. But if I did, I don’t think I’d pray for anyone to get a new job — even myself or my wife. I have the tools to solve my own problems. So does my friend. He knows that, and so does his wife. I think she’s just going with the “every little bit helps” angle — which brings up an even more distressing thought: does that mean she doesn’t think he can do it on his own merit?

Ah, the power of prayer.

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* Oh, I still recite the prayers when I’m at family gatherings, but I don’t think I believe anymore.

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