Is Discrimination Against Christians Real?
Those who are in the know say you should keep your resume up-to-date, and I did—for about the first three years. But 3 years turned into 5, and 5 into 10, and 10 turned into 17. When I finally resigned from my position, I couldn’t even find that resume which I’d last updated 14 years earlier.
So I started a new one from scratch. I read a few articles about the current trends in resumes, had a few people look it over, and then I put it out on the world wide web. With amazing rapidity, I began to receive emails from professional resume writers with their free reviews. In turn, I am sure they hoped to convince me that I was hopelessly unemployable without their expert help.
With trepidation, because nobody likes to be told that their effort did not produce a good result, I read the preface to a review. “Prior to reading my critique, I’d like you to prepare yourself to take emotion out of the equation.”
I steeled myself and kept reading.
“Frankly, LAURA, your resume is seriously lacking in NUMEROUS areas.”
Yikes! Even though I was already getting quite a lot of calls from recruiters, I figured it must be pretty bad since they had ALL CAPPED the word numerous.
I read through the critique and decided she made some valid points. I began to rework a few phrases and portions of the resume; but then, despite my resolve to lay feelings to the side, she emotionally hijacked me with the following words.
“Activities should be limited to relevant professional organizations. College and religious affiliations should be omitted, as they may be considered unprofessional or offensive.”
Offensive? I was stunned! I graduated from a Christian college, and was that so offensive that it would be better to leave off my accredited bachelor’s degree than to admit publicly that I was a Christian? My only other reference to my Christianity was the fact that I had served on the board of a Christian writer’s association. I thought a future employer might appreciate that I was a communicator.
All kinds of thoughts were running through my head. This is a stressful time, Laura. Everything seems like a big deal when you are unemployed. But, No! This is a big deal! This isn’t about whether or not you can write a resume, this is discrimination against Christians. For most of my life, being a Christian in this great nation of ours has been a personal right. Recently, I have seen signs that the tide is shifting, and this was one more sign.
I take comfort in I John 3:13 “Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you.” In sharp contrast, God’s message is one of love. A few verses later, we see beautiful words “By this we know love, because He (Jesus) laid down His life for us.” With this sweet reminder, peace washed over me.
I had to admit the resume reviewer had made some other suggestions which made sense. So I did make several changes, but I did not remove my minor references to Christianity. I continued to receive calls from recruiters, and to my relief, they had high praise for my resume and experience. The best moment came when I sat in an interview with a high level executive. He looked across the table at me and said, “I have to tell you, this is the best resume I have seen in a very long time, and I see a lot of resumes.”