Often our self-esteem is tied to our work

Published 8:14 am Thursday, August 24, 2023

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From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Rev. Graham: I have been in an uninteresting career for two decades and am bored with what I do. I see many of my friends in exciting ministry jobs that give them the opportunity to travel and meet interesting people. Being an instructor is no longer fulfilling. I hear many speakers say that our life’s work is something we should enjoy. At the same time, many of my friends shirk their responsibilities at home, so I am a bit torn since I do make a good living, which enables me to care for my family well. Am I wrong to change careers? – J.H.

Dear J.H.: Christians who work in the marketplace are many times the only real spiritual light in the midst of a dark world. We should not see our jobs as a burden, but as a responsibility given by God.
Often our self-esteem is tied to our work. In our culture, men and women often define themselves by the jobs they hold. But a person’s job says nothing about a person’s character or value.
The writer of Ecclesiastes discovered this truth: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might” (Ecclesiastes 9:10). Our job in life is not to be successful [as the world defines it], but to be faithful.
We often hear people talk about being “called” by God to the ministry or the mission field, but if we know Christ and are in His will, we have been called to our vocation. (In fact, the word “vocation” comes from a Latin word meaning “to be called.”)
No matter what our work, if it is legitimate, then it has dignity. Our work may seem burdensome and meaningless, but once we realize God wants us to be responsible, our attitudes will change.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

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