When it comes to discovering your calling, there's always a caveat. Your passions, interests, strengths, abilities, unique story and value will converge to have specific applications to the workplace.
BUT....it's not as simple as we tend to think it is.
You and I are complex creatures. We have both triumphs and tragedies, victories and bruises in our stories.
I wish it was as easy as figuring out what you're called to do and then finding a place to express yourself. But it's not. You and I need some healing. And transformation.
Somebody said something to you that changed the way you saw yourself, for the worse. Somebody forgot to tell you something that you needed to hear along the way. The people in your family and life have shaped you. They weren't perfect, and they hurt you- unintentionally or perhaps intentionally.
I know we're tempted to think our lives are plug-and-play. Figure out our calling and then go for it. But the deeper we go on the journey, the more we realize that we CAN'T become the best versions of ourselves without walking through the dark valley of healing and transformation.
We need new operating systems. We need new character, a new nature. Not a new personality or new gifts or strengths or a different story. But we need to deal with the bruises and warts, they insecurities and fears, the negative thoughts and harmful reactions, the dysfunction in how we relate to people, and surrender our self-centeredness to something bigger.
- What would your life be like if you were completely healed, freed, and released to be who you're supposed to be? What do you need to do to get there?
Have you ever paused for a moment during your life and wondered, what if? Maybe during a moment studying for finals after you've hardly slept all week and realize that even if you memorize everything you need to know to ace your finals, you still won't have learned anything this quarter? Or a moment when you're going to work today and it hits you that it's been a long time since you enjoyed what you do? Maybe you started to wonder if there's a different way to do life, a different approach or attitude that might unlock your experience and catapult you into a life of meaning, purpose, and impact?
I can think of nothing more powerful than to take five minutes and ask some serious questions, starting with, "What if we...?"
Confession: I'm ripping off a phrase that's been time-tested by a friend of mine, Bob Goff
. He's taught me that if you want to live a life engaged, a life leaning forward into the things that God is up to, then start a rhythm of asking questions that inspire you and spark you to think differently. I'm wondering if there's a different way to approach work, a different way to approach our careers, a different way to approach each day and every moment of interaction with someone else? For many of us who have wondered if there's more to life and spent more than a few minutes wishing that life would change, what if we could change it all? What if we could become people engaged with life, working in a mixture of creativity and excellence? What if we could truly find joy in the work we do, but not until we fully give ourselves with our best efforts? What if our relationships at work could be different- friendships where we are the ones who celebrate with others and
connect in meaningful moments? What if we could become the go-to people for others around us, for wisdom, for connection, for friendship and for inspiration? What if we could be on the front lines of turning outdated practices or unhealthy patterns around inside organizations? What if we could be a source of joy and life and love to the people around us? What if we could discover our strengths and live into them so our work not only gave us satisfaction but also blessed the people around us?I'm just wondering if there's a different way to start, and be, and think, and live, and interact, and work... What if we
started to talk more about all this stuff, and what if we got together to inspire each other, and encourage each other, and challenge each other, and wake each other up?If this sparks anything in you, consider becoming someone who launches a Faith@Work group, on your campus, in your office, in your city.
How do we become people who work from the inside out? Where who we are on the inside is deeply rooted in the love that God has for us, so that the external 'fruit' of our lives impacts and affects the people around us? Jesus' promise is that if we abide in Him, He will abide in us, and we will produce much fruit (John 15). Use these questions to journey inward and become a different kind of person who would do the kinds of things Jesus would do if He were you:
- What metrics (measurements) are used in the traditional business environment to measure someone’s worth?
- What is it about negative feedback that violates our sense of self worth?
- What happens to you when you feel attacked, critiqued, insecure, humiliated, competitive? Where do you turn? What do you feel?
- What scriptures do you hold onto to remember your true worth?
- Think of ideas for practical ways to remember your true worth throughout the day.