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Revalida, revalidated.

It is a tradition of Pointwest trainees to undergo the last stretch of their bootcamp training by having a revalida. Revalida is a rite of passage for trainees before they enter the corporate world (which in PW is also called as the “floor”).

It is a Q and A portion of some sort where the soft skills of the trainee will be put to test over a series of situational questions. As per my usual self it was a difficult feat to venture into. I was not that eloquent and fluent in my articulation that sometimes I stutter and eat my words before these were even blurted out. The revalida is just simple. The trainee, before fishing out one question from a fish bowl will first have his bestest performance (this too I believe was included in the overall revalidation assessment) to knock the panel’s socks off. By the way the panel is composed of Practice Heads and Managers. So no stress. Just be your usual self. Or not.
After the performance, the trainee would then read the question aloud to the jury and answer it on-the-spot. A member from the jury can then throw follow up questions until he’s satisfied or bored to death.
I was not a stranger to panel interviews. Before landing my working stint at Pointwest I was exposed to these nerve-wracking and sweat-inducing interviews that I thought the process would just be a walk in the park. Nope. It was a 21km marathon where you need to get past life threatening hurdles unscathed. Before the Q and A I performed Teenage Dream by Katy Perry with a trembling voice which the panel mistook for something like an added vibrato effect. 
It went fine. I was confident with that. But when I read the question, my heart started doing jumping jacks and that’s when I knew it was headed towards a different direction.
If I remember it correctly the question I picked was something like this:
You and an officemate of yours are up for a promotion. Your officemate was promoted but you weren’t. But you think you were more deserving of the promotion. What will you do?
It wasn't exactly the same question but it somehow was similar.
My answer went like this:
"If it was the management's decision to promote him instead of me then I would gladly accept it." I paused, composed myself and prepared for another question to be thrown at me.
But what if you really know in yourself that you truly deserve the promotion and not your officemate who is lazy and unproductive at work?
My answer? Still the same. I was so confident with my answer that I decided to stick with it until the next question was given to me.
You are a Christian aren't you? YES!, I responded.
How would you feel if you were requested to come to the office on a Sunday to work? Sundays are for attending Sunday services right? How would you go about with that? Plus, it's your immediate supervisor who is asking you to make yourself available as there is an important deliverable due that day.
Oh, man that was tough. The question and the urgency to think of the right answer and convey it to the expectant audience verbosely made it more difficult for me to come up with the safest possible answer. So I decided to ask that the question be repeated. This time, I had one safe answer in mind. And I hope I can crawl my way out of this situation with only a few follow up questions.

“I would go to work on that day and report to my manager. Missing one Sunday service will do me just fine”, I answered carefully enunciating each word to make it sound casual (and confident).

But how is that? Another question followed coming from the same person.

“To be honest, I see myself as a corporate slave. That’s why whatever I am tasked to do, if it allows me to contribute to the productivity of my company then I will definitely do it.”

I somehow let out a sigh of relief thinking “This is it, I am done with this seemingly unending Revalida.”

Some members of the panel seemed unimpressed with my answer; the others were uninterested to say the least. Then I went out the room and called the next trainee.

Looking back at that particular moment in my life I realized how unprepared and inexperienced I was at that time. My answer was safe and not straight to the point. And it was not based from any of my life experiences.

But what really made that experience somehow cringe-worthy was my answer to the last question.

And if I was given a chance to answer that, this will be it:

“Thank you for that wonderful question…”

Nope. Forget that.

How would you feel if you were requested to come to the office on a Sunday to work? Sundays are for attending Sunday services right? How would you go about with that? Plus, it's your immediate supervisor who is asking you to make yourself available as there is an important deliverable due that day.
"I would feel disappointed. As a Christian, I should always be consistent with my Sunday service attendance. I would request my practice head to move my schedule to another date. There will always be available people for the job. I believe it is my right to practice my faith and I firmly believe that he will understand my decision."
Yes. That would be my answer. And even if they ask for additional questions nothing can change that answer.
Believing in something is one thing, holding on to that faith is another.
And I believe that everything that I have right now belongs to God, even my work. That is why my priority will always be His ministry.
If other employees can demand on their working schedules, why can’t I?
Don’t forget Matthew 6:33 which says:

“But seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
Seeking God’s Kingdom first means that in every decision that we do we should always include God in it and make Him the top priority. In retrospect, my first answer to my Revalida was devoid of that. I was focused on my work that I neglected God’s ministry which was wrong. That was my mistake and I have made terms with that. Currently, my working schedule demands me to go to work from Mondays thru Fridays, 10:00 am - 7:30 pm. This allows me to fully commit myself to my Saturday and Sunday ministries (Campus and Media if you want to know).
That is why if you are still unemployed right now, ask God for a job that will not draw you away from your ministry. Look for a job that will not hinder you from serving God. God will provide you with the skills, strength and wisdom to look for a suitable job, just do your part because God is forever faithful.
Have a blessed day! - T

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