Finding the Right Career

“What do you want to be when you grow up?”

Almost every young person around the world has been asked that question. And no wonder: It’s an excellent question! Next to following Jesus and whom you’ll marry, the career you choose is the most important decision you can ever make. It will help determine where you live, how long you’ll live there, the friends you’ll have, how much money you’ll make, and most importantly, what type of ministry you will do for God. Clearly, choosing the right career is not a decision to take lightly.

So how do you find the right career? Try the following five steps:

  1. Make your commitment. Commit your life to Christ each day, asking Him for His wisdom to find which career He has in mind for you. Occasionally, God will simply tell you what career He wants you to choose. But if He doesn’t, prayerfully go to Step 2.
  2. Discover your gifts. Find out what your spiritual gifts are. Knowing your spiritual gifts can help narrow down what career God is calling you to.
  3. Pinpoint your passion. What has God given you a longing for? What gets you excited about life? What difference in the world do you crave to make for Christ? The answer to these questions is usually your passion or passions. When God gives you a passion, you should prayerfully consider choosing a career that will help you focus on your vision.
  4. Freely experiment. This is often one of the most exciting of the five steps. Since God calls people to be pastors, teachers, farmers, lawyers, politicians, homemakers, street cleaners, insurance agents, painters, and a host of other things, you may need to experiment before you can determine God’s career for you. Make a list of careers that fit your gifts and passions. Then, shadow people already in those careers, or take an internship for a summer with a company that employs people in the line of work you’re considering. And remember: Whatever form your experimentation takes, don’t fear failure. “Failure” at the career you’re experimenting with just might lead you to success, as it helps you to know what you’re good at and what you’re not. That’s valuable information, and can be used to help you narrow down which careers do fit you well.
  5. Do it all for the glory of God. Whatever your career turns out to be, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward” (Col. 3:23-24, NIV). This will not only bring you personal satisfaction but as others are blessed by your diligent work, it will help confirm that you are indeed in the right career for you.