Employees Returning To Work After A Disaster

Reminder of God's Covenant not to flood the earth again. (via my mom Julie)

Reminder of God’s Covenant not to flood the earth again. (via my mom Julie)

Employees who are returning to work have their minds on a whole lot more than just work. They have to sort through every emotion because there will be triggers that will set them off. Yes, they come unexpectedly and at unexpected times. Please also treat them gently and listen if need be.

After the storm, my employers kept getting onto me because I wasn’t making my work quota. And it was very difficult, and yes I eventually was able to work fairly well. The feelings didn’t completely disappear, the feelings were still there. They need to realize also that the grief emotions are very, very normal to everyone who has suffered a tragedy or a natural disaster.

We were given emotions by God to allow us to express how we feel. We were made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). We do what we do to spread His glory all around. Yet there are those who have chosen to harden their hearts toward those who have lost everything. 

Some of the things said to me afterward & with no empathy or sympathy to it:

“Get over it”

“I live on the edge of the disaster zone. I am not having any problems with it.” 

“Do not talk about the tornado at all. I know this is the one year anniversary, but keep your feelings to yourself” (try doing that one)

These three things were 3 setbacks in my recovery at the first. We need to use our tongues wisely,kindly and gently. 

James 3:7-9

New International Version (NIV)

7 All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness.

James says it so clearly, yet we are fallen. Fallen people who want to go our own way. But we need to remember that what we speak will sometimes stay with someone for quite awhile, like these three things spoken to me after a disaster. 

Yet when we as survivors return to work, it isn’t always easy there too. If you work in retail and deal with customer service, and have volunteers come into the store. That is where it gets hard, because they expect us to be able to do everything we can do. Sometimes they are rude. That isn’t fair to anyone anyhow. 

I have just found this link to the local paper The Joplin Globe and still to this day 2 years later many are still feeling the anxiety of the storms after Moore,OK. 

So Employers please take into consideration what your employees are going through. The stress that the disaster has been upon them. The changes they have to deal with. If they can’t afford something @ the moment, allow them to purchase it later. Make sure you have ample support for them while working, be a listening ear (oh yes I wish I had that too).  Do not get upset about the little things. Enable them in ways to recovery do not belittle  them whatsoever.  

1 Corinthians 13

New International Version (NIV)

13 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecyand can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Employers:

1. Help your with love, not condescending words

2. Support them in the hard times if possible and plausible

3. Allow them time to gather the things they need, including new clothes for work

4. Trust that they will be doing things for their job one step @ a time

5. Let them Talk, it helps in the healing process

6. Have a conselor on hand if they need someone who needs to talk alone and doesn’t feel comfortable sharing

7. Pray for your Employees during this time:31 Days of Prayer for Moore Ok2 & for more prayer prompts: 31 Days of Prayer for Joplin Missouri

8. Help them: Helpful Information about Donation

9. Offer gift-cards for Walmart or Target to help them get the items they need

10. Listen to God and what He wants you to do, then do it. He knows what is best for your employee and their families. 

Thankful Thursday

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