Our prayer and God’s mercy are like two buckets in a well; while one ascends, the other descends. ~ Arthur Hopkins
“If it would be helpful for the night crew, I could come in for four hours from 11:30 to 04:00 in the morning. Whatever the supervisors want…”
Those were my words written in an email to the one doing our work schedule. They used to not allow me to work nights after my request for a reasonable accommodation had begun years ago to remain working just 8 hours per shift. Due to my history of neck disability from my old job, working past that duration would exacerbate the neck pain I had. Knowing how power was the issue for the people involved in handling my request, true enough, I was given a hard time and through actions and words implied that they wouldn’t allow me. Despite seeking help from the federal government (EEOC) in a legal way, help never came after waiting for almost 2 years. All the other discriminatory actions and words were not investigated. My case was closed. Just like that.
Knowing how short our staffing had been, I was forced to work on PM shifts while other Per Diems were taken to work nights which I had been doing for many, many years. For 8 hours.
I was determined to fight that I refused to work PM’s until they started getting me to work nights. 8 hours. Most of the days, they were the usual schedule I used to do. They knew that. I knew that. The shortage with staffing was great. And in other times, unexpected when call off’s came.
The response came in such a matter of minutes. I was excited at first until I read the reply:
“Some people here have advised me that the hours you asked for wouldn’t be helpful…The busy times would be before 11:00 and after 04:00.”
There could be some truth to that. We had down times at nights. But most of the time, night shift was busy if not with tons of doctor’s orders to be transcribed, a lot of inmates sought treatments for their discomforts. What bothered me was that I requested for her to ask the supervisors. The problem was that she got answers from “people” who might not have even worked the night shift or if they did, they should know that some workers could be lazy despite having a busy shift.
This didn’t hurt me anymore. I wanted to be angry. But I had gone through a tough ordeal with them since 2010. During this time, God didn’t change the outcome. I didn’t win my case. But it was okay. He was changing and continuing to work within me. He gave me peace and contentment. He comforted me, provided for the needs, strengthened me and my family and reassured me time and time again…He was the One in control no matter what these people wanted to do or say.
Last Monday, one of the night supervisors called me and asked me if I was still interested to work for those hours. She said the needs were great and that she would take whatever I could offer. A day later, that person doing the schedule emailed me and asked me if I was still interested to do so. But it was too late…The times that she advised me that my offer would not be of help, something came up that I couldn’t do it at this time. I apologized. Since I was the one who brought it up. I wouldn’t know the effect. She could be upset. But I prayed instead…for them to realize something:
There is nothing impossible with God. No matter what people plan, He is the One Who controls everything. Even if no one wants to help me, it is okay because I know…I have His help wherever I am, whatever situation I am in…It only takes one thing to do…
"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
- Matthew 7:7 (NIV)
“If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." – Matthew 21:22 (NIV)
Jesus replied, "This kind can be cast out only by prayer." – Mark 9:29 (NLT)
“Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.” – Ephesians 6:18 (NLT)