The Word on the Week


Those in the workforce have become familiar with CPD – Continuous Personal Development – which formalised into training the abilities required to cope with the developing jobscene. With the introduction of the gig economy CPD itself has been left behind and we now require to become familiar with Skillnet to stay in the race.

This concept harnesses technology which itself is continually upgrading. It becomes the agent for change as more targeted ways of working are devised. No-one is immune from this revolution. It applies equally to the farmer and the surgeon. will give a flavour of what’s on offer.

Work in future, we are told, will resemble more of the free-lance journalist who earns his bread from writing article after article. There is no safety net. If the inspiration dries up so does the job. The land of permanent pensionable is a distant memory. So the Millennials coming out of secondary or tertiary education can look forward to a life of assignments, tasks and projects offering short-term contracts but little promise of permanent work outside of the Civil Service.

Along with this ‘independence’ comes the ability to set your own hours and your own location i.e. home working may be one option. On the plus side you can achieve a better ‘work-life balance’. In some cases, this may enable a couple to raise a family while continuing to contribute to the workscene often, for them, an economic necessity.

Courses are available, such as at IMI, or more direct tuition by hiring an expert to instruct staff on their particular field. In the Christian realm Irish Bible Institute offers tuition locally whereas both Cork and Belfast have colleges. St Paul’s advice to Timothy holds good today “Study to present yourself to God, as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth” (2 Timothy Chapter 2 verse 15).

The old joke of the Preacher sitting by his fireside finishing the last chapter of the Bible and exclaiming “Thank goodness that’s finished” is about as far from the truth as you can get! The Psalmist’s assertion “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Chapter 119 verse 105) was never more necessary than today.

Our problem of congenital blindness when it comes to understanding the Bible is addressed by Jesus immediately before the ascension “Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem” (St Luke Chapter 24 verses 45/47). We are his witnesses today.