It was 2020, the pandemic was in full swing and unemployment had hit its all-time high in years. Unfortunately my husband and I experienced this when we both lost our jobs. After months and months of searching, struggling and praying, we came across a posting for an unemployment group offered through our church. Without hesitation, we both signed up. Little did we know that joining that group would be a life changing experience for us.
We were immediately put at ease by the warmth and encouragement from our leaders, Dave Sparkman and Judy Priestly, who are both experienced Crossroads Guides. They facilitated the group in an engaging way so that all the members participated and got to know each other. Our group followed Crossroads Career’s book: You Are Created for Good Works. This provided a fantastic framework for each of us as we dove into the bigger picture of job transitions and what God wants us to learn. Sometimes people who haven’t gone through a job transition don’t understand the fear and emptiness it brings. It can be one of the most discouraging times in one’s life. Gathering in community with others who are in the same boat, provided a much needed support network. As a group we brainstormed together, strategized our job search together and most importantly prayed together. This provided the much needed encouragement and hope each of us needed to get through the challenging times. We became like a family.
In addition to meeting weekly as a group, each of us also received individual career coaching sessions from our leaders. The leaders reviewed our resumes, helped us prep for interviews, discussed networking ideas, directed us to other resources and prayed with us. They guided us along the journey and gave us hope. They held us accountable not only to ourselves, but to the group as well. This fostered a sense of togetherness and unity within our group. When I think about everything our leaders did for us, I am reminded of Peter 4:10 “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.”
When people share the gifts of their time and talent it brings great hope to others. They may be meeting people in their time of crisis when hope is most needed. Jesus taught us so much about this in his lessons. “Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” Psalm 25:5
It’s assuring to know an organization like Crossroads Career is here to provide people with the support and encouragement they need while going through a job transition, and most importantly to give them hope. The dedicated team of volunteers at Crossroads Career all have a professional background in Human Resources, Career Planning and/or Guidance. They are here to share the generous gift of their time and expertise with others. I thank Crossroads for the gift of hope and encouragement they gave so warmly to us at a time when we needed it most. If you’d like to connect with one of our Career Guides, click here.
Elise Hartmann is the Operations Manager at Crossroads Career. She has extensive experience working in business development, sales, account management, customer service and training and development. She has worked in the tourism, hospitality, retail, technology, education and media industries.