What does the word “work” mean to you?
- Is it your job? Is it your career?
- Does it make you happy? Does it make you cringe?
- Is it something you have to do, or want to do?
- Is it the root of your status and identity, or is it the fruit of your character and talents?
Here’s something I’ve learned in my life’s journey so far …
When my greatest sense of acceptance, my wealth, my meaning and my value are a product of my work, then I will never have enough, my relationships will be chaotic and empty and I will feel unfulfilled. On the surface, I may look like I have the perfect life, the perfect family and have my act together, but deep down, I’m depressed and unhappy.
Fortunately, life’s a two-sided coin, and I like the other side much better. I’ve learned my identity, my purpose, my talents are a gift from God. I don’t have to earn them. I only have to graciously accept them. Then, the work I do becomes the fruit of this acceptance. My work is the reward of understanding who I am. Developing my character becomes the focus.
In other words, “who I am” is not a function of “what I do for a living”. Rather, “what I do and where I do it” is a result of “who I am”. Developing my character enables and empowers me to do everything with intention.
My happiness is not a function of my circumstances. I create the circumstances I want because I know where I’m going, I graciously live life and I get to know God, and myself, a little better each day.