Arline was a hard worker. No matter what she did, she put her all into it. After working a few jobs, she landed in a place where the money was so much better than any where else she had worked.
She continued at that job for a number of years, getting promotion after promotion. Arline looked ahead and saw that she could have a nice, contented life at this job. But, then, the company was taken over by a competitor, and Arline lost her job.
She found another job where she could do the same thing and make the same kind of money, but that job also ended when that company was bought out by a competitor.
To find another of the same kind of job, she had to travel far from her home and take her family with her. The new job was good but it, too, didn’t last very long, only a year.
Arline began to suspect that divine intervention was at play because while she tried for months and months to find another job, there were none to be found.
She looked for other ways she might keep occupied. Arline got more involved in her children’s lives and even volunteered at the school they attended. She made new friends and signed up for a workshop on social justice.
During the course of the study, as she was reading one of the books that talked about peasant farmers in Africa ekeing out a living with the help of NGOs she was suddenly struck by the selflessness of people who would reach out to help others in this way.
The Spirit moved in Arline and she thought, “what have I been doing with my life?” Although she was a practicing Catholic, she realized that she had been so busy with her life and doing well and making money, she had blocked out God’s voice.
And then, she thought, all those jobs where I thought I was happy and content, God was telling me, “this isn’t for you. I have other plans for you.
So, she volunteered with an organization, whose work was all about social justice and creating the structures that would allow the poorest and the marginalized to live like dignified, human beings.
In the process, Arline felt a contentment she had never felt at her other jobs. For one thing, she learned more about herself and the aspects of her own self that had remained hidden and now were given a chance to come forward and flourish.
Arline had found her voice in speaking out against oppression and injustice, and she found herself being more vigilant now to listen to God’s voice and what she was being called to.