Is Your Job Living within Your Purpose?
- Alisha Headley iBelieve Contributing Writer
- 2021 16 Mar
For many of us, we go to school for what we are passionate about and hope to land the job of our dreams. Once we achieve our dream job, some of us are satisfied and will retire doing what we love to do from the day we started to the day we stop working.
For others, we realize we lose that passion we once had making us feel like we are living Groundhog Day over and over. We wake up, clock in each day at our jobs, just to repeat and do the same thing the next day.
We go to our job daily, but we seem to have no purpose or passion behind it.
While your job can certainly feel like your God-given purpose, they can also differ greatly. In order to determine if your job is living within your purpose, let's define the two.
A Job versus a Purpose
A job is that place you go to from 8-5pm (perhaps longer) that you go to for that paycheck. You go to provide for your family and to pay your expenses. According to the dictionary, it is defined as a paid position of regular employment. Maybe you do not hate it, but your certainly do not love it. You do it because it is what you’ve always done, it’s secure and stable, pays the bills, and you don’t know any different.
A purpose on the other hand is widely defined as a person’s sense of determination. This is the heart behind what you do, the motivation. This is that nudge inside of you that you have had on you from the time you were young.
Or perhaps it is a new nudge telling you to pursue this new passion on your heart. This is what you may call a prompting of the Holy Spirit. Often, these nudges can feel crazy, and seem too crazy to pursue.
But remember who we serve--we serve a God capable of what others may deem as ideas as He wants to use us to invest His heavenly purpose. Jeremiah 37:27 God says, “I am the LORD, the God of all mankind, is anything too hard for me?” And the answer is no, for “nothing is impossible for God” (Matthew 19:26).
If you are in a job where you feel you are serving no purpose, I encourage you to pray for God’s direction and leadership asking Him to impress on your heart your purpose. Ask Him to show you His purpose for this season in your current job for you, or to lead you to something greater!
It is possible that you are exactly where you are supposed to be for this season in the job you are in? What if God’s ultimate purpose is still being done even if you feel you are serving no real purpose but rather just going to a job every day? Whatever job or place you are in in your life now, God is working out His purpose in you throughout it in this very season.
Trust God’s Purpose in This Season, and Do Not Rush the Next
Maybe you know your purpose God has called you to, but perhaps you cannot pursue that purpose right now outside your current job. It might not make sense financially, or the doors have not opened quite yet. Do not force your purpose to come about.
I am not telling you to not pursue what God has called you to do, rather wait on His direction and timing. His perfect timing.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 says that there is an appointed time for everything, saying “to everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.” The problem is most of us want to immediately step into our purpose, but we must allow God to guide us in His timing.
When I left my corporate career in finance, it was God’s timing. I wanted to leave my job years prior as I knew God had a purpose for me in writing and working with women from the time I was a young girl. But God had to do a lot of work inside me before I moved into what I am doing now in my purpose.
He still used me in my job though, in those seasons, and it prepared me for what was ahead. He still had purpose within my job during that season.
A great example of God’s purpose being performed in every season is the life of King David in the Bible. He was told that he would be King and that was God’s purpose for Him. However, he did not become King until almost two decades later. (2 Samuel 2:1-6) Why? Because God had to prepare Him to step into that role.
Before He became King, he killed a giant by the name of Goliath (1 Samuel 17). Before he killed the giant, he killed a bear and a lion. (1 Samuel 17:34-36) Before he killed a bear or a lion, he was just a shepherd boy who tended sheep and was overlooked by his very own family as anyone significant (1 Samuel 16:1-31).
Before his purpose of becoming King, David had many other purposes prior to that moment of stepping into his place on the throne. His purpose looked differently, but purpose showed up in all the times he was faithful and obedient in each thing God had called him to do next.
His purpose served far more than being the hero and King we know about his story today. He did not try to rush into the next season or network his way into the Kingdom to take over the throne before it was time. Rather, he served his purpose in his everyday life through His obedience trusting God in the current season he was in.
Your Purpose Is about Your Obedience
I tend to not like the word obedience. It feels cruel reminding me of all the times my parents would tell me I had to be home by a certain time or to avoid a certain gathering because they did not feel it was safe. I used to think they wanted me to be unhappy in life. But as I got older, I realized it was quite the opposite. They loved me so much, that they could see the dangers ahead and would ask me to do things to protect me out of their love for me.
In the same way, God loves us so much and has an ultimate purpose to use us if we are willing, that He often asks us to do things out of obedience that many times do not make any sense.
King David could have easily questioned why he was not in the castle as King, and why he was tending sheep if he had such a large purpose ahead of Him. But he never questioned. He just did what the Lord asked Him to do and did the next step of obedience.
Perhaps, you are stuck in your job and know it is not the purpose God has for you or maybe you just feel like it is not serving a purpose. Certainly, God’s purpose is so much more than this right? For He promises us in Jeremiah 29:11 that “for I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give your hope and a future.”
Maybe your current job does not feel purposeful. But friends, it is. I imagine David did not feel like he was doing anything out in the field tending to sheep that served a purpose. But that season served him in his next season. The tools and preparation he needed in order to become King, started from his job as a shepherd boy.
King David’s purpose did not start the moment he became King, it started the day he was born. And every single season He was obedient, it served a purpose.
We often correlate the word ‘purpose’ to something big. Serving on stage, becoming a missionary or large influencer and author or becoming King. The job you have many not feel it is serving within your purpose, but it could be exactly where God wants you for this season.
I encourage you to pray about where God wants you now and be obedient in where He currently has you, just as King David was obedient long before he ever became King.
God Wants You to Be Excellent in the Job You Are at Right Now
God does not want you to be excellent at the position you’re going to be at, He wants you to be excellent at the position you’re in right now. Just as David was faithful in each position He was at; we are to be excellent and faithful at where we are now too.
Perhaps you are in a career right now where you are bored and feel no passion or purpose. Maybe you are a stay-at-home wife who left her career to tend to her husband, or you are a stay-at-home mom where you feel you are serving no purpose taking care of children all day with little time to yourself.
Perhaps you are in pursuit of your God-giving dreams, but nothing is taking off and no doors are opening. Maybe you are retired and feel life really has no purpose anymore now that work is done. Or you are empty nesters and feel like your purpose is stripped from you now that all your kids are out of the house.
Whatever the circumstance, whatever sort of job you are in or season, God wants us to be excellent at it being obedient in it all as God’s purpose is still there. That small thing that you are doing now that may seem insignificant, just remember God is watching you handle what He has given you now, to make sure you are ready for the thing that’s next.
He loves you enough to not allow you to go face a Goliath when you’re not ready to face what’s in front of you now. For Colossians 3:23 says “and whatever you do, do EVERYTHING whole heartily, as to the Lord…”
Photo Credit: ©GettyImages/Ivanko Brnjakovic
Alisha Headley is a writer + speaker who has a desire to meet the everyday woman in her everyday life with biblical truth. Stepping into her true calling, she left the corporate world behind as a former-financial VP to love on her family as a stay-at-home wifey + dog mama, while also being able to pursue her passion as a writer. Healing from a chapter of life consumed with lies she once believed about herself, she is inspired to point women to Christ to experience the freedom + power to overcome those lies with the truth written in God’s word. In her free time, Alisha enjoys road trips around the country, working out so she can eat her favorite foods, and creatively styling her outfits with a craft for fashion. Alisha is a proud wifey and dog mama living in Scottsdale, Arizona.