“What should I do with my career?” “How do I know what I’m called to do?” “I thought I wanted this career, but it no longer feels right – what do I do?” … These are questions I’ve heard from people at all stages of their career. There are those who know exactly what they were created to do for work. For others, it can seem like a game of chance as they try to figure it out. In those situations, concerns about work and what you should be doing can be a huge source of stress.
I want to encourage you that no matter where you find yourself, Ephesians 2:10 applies to you – You are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works which He prepared in advance for you to do.
As we celebrate the 15-year anniversary of Workmatters, I think back on my own story and how many times I have shared it to encourage others who felt lost. When I graduated high school, I was sure my future was in computer programming. At 19, I got a job as a COBOL programmer, thinking I would do that for five years and learn what options would be available as a career path. Things moved more quickly than I expected, and by the age of 28 I had my own consulting firm. But by the time I was 35, everything in my life changed and I was starting all over again.
That was my time of searching to find my place – project manager, sales trainer, marketing manager, and membership development director. I worked for large corporations, small entrepreneurial businesses, medium-sized companies and a small non-profit. On multiple occasions I thought, this is it! And then it wasn’t. After facing layoffs, downsizing and lots of change I really wondered where all this was going and what it was I was supposed to be doing.
When I moved to Arkansas in 2009, it really felt like starting over. And I was with respect to my business network, but what I took with me wherever I went were my experiences, skills and passion. What got me through each transition, whether it was something I chose or something that was thrust upon me, was my awareness that all the things I had done, all the things I had learned through each experience mattered. That’s how I landed a job as an instructional designer when I didn’t have the required college degree. And that job along with the divine connection God arranged to Workmatters led me to the job I have today. In 2013, I got to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of Workmatters on staff, and I’m blessed to be able to celebrate year 15 and my own 5 years here.
When I look back, it’s clear to me that every experience, every challenge, every strange twist and every new skill I had to learn was for a purpose. God wasn’t trying to throw me a curve ball. He hadn’t left me stranded. He was preparing me for a job I absolutely love and feel I was created for.
You may be doing work you don’t feel called to right now. Let me assure you, if you honor God with whatever you’re doing today, He will use it for good – to bless others, to develop or deepen relationships, to train you for your next assignment, or lead you to places you never dreamed of. That’s what He did for me. When you look back, you will see how He was preparing you all along. So don’t lose heart. Trust God!