I was talking to a friend the other day about careers and goals in life.
What is the purpose of life? Should we be able to work in a job that we enjoy? How do we know where God is calling us?
There's so many parts of growing up, that make me realize how little I know. This life is a journey, and yet sometimes I feel like a lost wonderer on an unknown path. And yet one thing I've realized is how much I long to live with purpose. That I don't want to get to the end of my life and say "it was wasted." "All these years I've wasted..." How terrible it would be to get there.
Which causes me to contemplate, my life now. What are my regrets? Am I living in a way so that I'm not wasting time in things don't matter? Am I living in the right place? Am I working in the right job? Am I deepening my walk with God?
And I'm going to be honest with you, when I ask myself these questions, sometimes I want to quit the job I'm currently doing and go move overseas to be a missionary. Sometime I want a "quick fix" for a job I'm more passionate and purposeful about. Sometimes these questions make me angry about choices I've made, or even how I spend my time.
But I think it's also important to remember that "sanctification" and the process of growing in God- is not a one time decision, or simple fix. It's a life spent on daily sacrifices, it's continual choices to change and repent and become more like Jesus. And the job you are currently working in now, doesn't define your future and where you will work in the past. A pastor I was talking too, challenged me to focus not on the -what I'm doing now- but on the - who I'm becoming- while I'm doing it.
Is my work helping me to grow into a person that's more like Jesus? Is my job bringing glory to God?
I think those are two big questions we have to ask ourselves along with these others I believe God desires for us to find in our job?
1. Does my job bring me joy (80% of the time)? Is it a blessing to others?
2. And is my job helping me grow or learn new things? In a profession or in my walk with God?
3. Is my job increasing my relationship capacity- most importantly with my Savior- but also with the people around me?
Because I think these are some of the most important things that matter in life:
* Me glorifying God(my upward connection)
* Blessing others and sharing with them the love of Jesus (my neighbors- outward connection)
* Joy and peace and a closer relationship with God for myself (my personal connection)
So these are the priorities I want to cherish as I follow God and as I seek direction in what I should do next.
I love this verse in Isaiah 55 that says "You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace, the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap it's hands."
I believe that our purposes in life, really should include joy and peace- and that those can be mile-markers of the Lord's path for us. And yet at the same time, I think this world is not our home, and that our hearts will never truly be fulfilled and living to their utmost purpose- until we experience a fuller, perfect life with God- and that may not happen until heaven.