When my sons were 13 and 16 there was a lot of talk around our house about college and career paths. I don’t remember my parents conversationally digging too deeply into the subject. They simply wanted me to do what made me happy. I distinctly remember thinking that a lot of things would make me happy, therefore choosing a career path was confusing. I had interests in many things and the word happy was too vague for me. I entered college not sure about what I wanted as a major. Before the beginning of my junior year I settled on becoming a writer. I earned my communications/journalism degree and that was that.
I suppose my personality is different from my parents. I share their sentiments and want my children to choose a career path that makes them happy and in one sense the decision is that simple. Just think about what interests you and where your gifts lie and get the training and education so you can master that trade. Simple, right? Well, not for me. The problem is I have had a nagging sense that there is more to the story that would help them on this journey. But what? Hum… Keep praying. That’s all I know to do.
We were in Florida on vacation and I listened to a sermon one morning on the beach that was an answer to my prayer. It is a sermon by Tim Keller called Made for Stewardship. One thing I love about his sermons is his ability to look at real life and connect it to the hope of the gospel. Even when I feel convicted by his message I am elated with the hope of the redemption Jesus bought for me. The idea that encouraged me regarding my boys future careers is, “Look in, Look out, Look up,” Keller connected the gospel to work. This was the missing piece that was nagging me for months.
There isn’t anything wrong with choosing a career path because it will bring happiness. In fact it’s the right thing to do but after listening to the sermon I understood why and how to connect the gospel to choosing a career path for the sake of happiness.
My sons and I listened to the sermon together. As opportunity arises we will have discussions about it. The next time conversations revolve around college and careers we will have more to talk about than we did before and hopefully they will get a sense of the richness God has in store for them through their work.
Living Outside the Lines Enjoys Work…
… by Looking in, Looking out, and Looking up