B y Joshua K. Gitau
I was heart struck by an article in the local dailies dated August 11, 2016. Its title; “Jobless Graduate Stands on Road with a Sign Asking for Employment”.
A year and a half ago, a young man from Nyeri, armed with a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce and accounting CPA Section 4, set off to Nairobi – the big city in the sun- for a date with destiny. His bet was that he had all it takes to land an accounting job and soon become the envy of his peers back home.
After making over 200 job applications, his efforts and enthusiasm were rewarded with nothing but the brutal reality of joblessness. Not to be faint hearted, he took to the streets with a big placard, if only to capture the attention of a potential employer. If successful, the lad would be home and dry. In fact, the assumption in Nairobi is that, if you attract enough attention you will also attract opportunities. The question remains, what if his efforts were futile? What if no one took notice? Would that be the end of all hope for him, his wife and daughter?
This story is just an example of many of our experiences when searching for employment or as Femi Jacobs would call it, vocationally challenged. We have at one time or another held our placards, popularly known as resumes, and roamed the streets hoping to attract someone’s attention. It doesn’t matter what kind of street; it could be a job site or a potential employer’s inbox, name it. Some of us have been successful and needless to say, others have not.
So where’s their hope? What’s the surest way to get noticed?
The late Dr. Myles Munroe once said that ‘What you were designed to be known for, is your gift’. I believe he was re-stating Proverbs 18:16: “A man’s gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men” [KJV].
Against this backdrop, I contend that our challenge is not a lack of opportunities but rather, our denial and refusal to acknowledge and harness our God-given gifts which He deposited in us, to make room or opportunities for us. That is the placard that God wants us to hold up. It is the only sure way to get noticed and to be purposeful in life.
Your gift gives you the ability to distinguish and differentiate yourself from others because that is where you are most qualified. No one can beat you at being you. In fact, when you train in what you are gifted in, learning is easy. The passion and drive come naturally.
So dare yourself to hold up this God-given placard and it won’t be long before the world takes notice and comes asking after you. Therein is your hope!
Joshua Gitau is a Programmes Administrator at the St. Paul’s University Institute of Lifelong Learning and Leadership Development (SPILL & LDC)