Right before the COVID-19 pandemic began, I resigned from my job in an advertising agency to pursue another role at one of the largest property developers in the country. The primary reason why I left was really for better compensation, but I was blessed that it was a less tiring commuting situation, and they even bumped up the role from assistant manager to manager because of my credentials. It was Godsent.

I clearly remember my first day was set in March 23, 2020. Lockdown in the country started in March 15 up until April 14 of the same year. I completely understood when they called and told me they had to move my start date to April 20th.

Instead of worrying, I took it as God’s way of telling me to rest because I only had the weekend as an interval between my previous job and the new one. I thought of doing freelancing gigs on the side to make sure I still had an income to help with expenses in our household while I waited. Freelancing wasn’t a new experience for me, so it wasn’t a challenge to start. I scoured the usual sites I go to for writing jobs I can take on, and I found my luck in a Facebook group for a project-based position in a startup marketing consultancy. I applied there and was hired a few days later to take on one of their projects as a Social Media Manager.

And then the lockdown got extended to April 30th. And so did my start date. In fact, the HR of the company I was moving to told me that my start date will now be tentative due to the pandemic.

I couldn’t imagine myself keeping still, especially if there isn’t a guarantee of my official new beginning, so I went ahead and looked for other opportunities. I came across a post in another freelancing site for a writing gig, I pitched my services and fortunately got the project. Doing those two freelancing gigs allowed me to earn money while waiting to start at my new role.

I was regularly following up for my start date during the time but they couldn’t give me a concrete answer. It was completely understandable because as much as the Philippines could have prepared for the pandemic better, the virus was and is taking longer than expected to manage. Many small businesses were starting to close down permanently because of the lack of revenue stream.

At this point, the cases were rising. My mom was frantic because of my health safety once I start working physically in my new office. But alas, community quarantine remained for the rest of May 2020. I had my side jobs with me, and I hadn’t finished my Master’s degree yet at that time, so I was occupied and lucky to still have income when there were retrenchments everywhere.

Near the end of May, the government announced that they would ease up the quarantine and allow skeletal workforces to be in the offices starting June 1. Few days later, I was contacted that my start date was now on June 8. I even remember asking if I had to be in the office and if they had a shuttle service available. The HR told me that I had to physically be there, and that shuttle services are available atfirst come first serve basis to pick us up at certain locations. None of the locations were near me so I had to think of a way to get in the office, resulting in me joining a carpooling Facebook group. I had a plan.

But God had other thoughts

On the morning of June 5, the COO of the startup marketing consultancy company I was freelancing for asked me if I was willing to take a full-time role with them. Admittedly, I was hesitant at first because I associate pay rates with the company sizes. Nonetheless, an opportunity is an opportunity, so I was transparent when I said that the reason why I left my previous job was for better compensation. They asked for the rate I was being given and told me that they’d send me an offer. Who was I to say no to that? The worse that could happen was me rejecting it.

But in the afternoon of June 5, the HR of the property developer called me. He told me that my start date was pushing through on June 8, that upcoming Monday. But, because of the government mandate that only allowed 50% capacity, my working arrangement will be the same. I’ll be in the office half the time, and the other half… well, it was gonna be no work no pay.

Imagine waiting to start in another role for 3 months, only to be told that the very reason you moved in the first place will be cut by 50%. AND that I had to risk my safety by going there too. I thought to myself, I shouldn’t have left then. I told him that I’d let him know ASAP if I’ll still push through.

At this point, I was counting on the offer to be sent by the marketing consultancy company. To be completely honest in my head at that point, I was already lucky if I’d be given the same rate as what I used to get in my previous job. I’d take it.

God works wonders

Come June 6, I received the offer. The package they sent topped the rate I was supposed to get. And they operate in a permanent work-from-home setup even pre-pandemic.

I knew I had to take it.

When I told my mom, I remember her being grateful because she honestly hoped that I wouldn’t push through for safety reasons. She asked God why He gave me a great opportunity, only to take it away. And she prayed hard for divine intervention that something better comes around. This was it.

There was no clearer sign that God allowed it to happen but he wasn’t going to leave me either.

I withdrew my offer acceptance in the other company and said yes to this new one, to where I am still currently employed in to date. And He used this company to take care of me. It was definitely Godsent.

Looking back, I was certain that the role in that property developer was Godsent. I went through 4 interviews. I had all my pre-employment requirements submitted. I had a plan.

But my plan wasn’t God’s plan.

He made it even better.

Having a job, let alone working from home during a global outbreak, is a blessing. The time I would have been spending commuting is now allotted to freelancing. I still work with the client I had for the freelance writing project back in April 2020 up until today. I have gotten a few more freelancing opportunities which may not be possible if I pushed through in the other company. We’re blessed that we don’t have to strap in budget for household expenses like many would because of jobs lost for the past 1.5 years.

God works, and He does it in His time.