Struggles come in all shapes and size some big, some small, but everyone has struggles unique to them. However, there are common struggles we all share. For instance, my youngest son graduates next year from high school and is thinking about his future. What he should do for work, where he should go to school, should he go to community college or go off to a University? When we have conversations with him about this it usually ends with us telling him to pray about and seek God. The truth is he may plan to go in one direction, but God may lead him in a completely different direction.
This week on the podcast I interviewed Eric Nevins host of the Halfway There Podcast: Eric Nevins: Struggle to Find Your Calling
We talked about the struggle to find your calling, how God sometimes plants you somewhere that doesn’t make sense, and His grace to not waste that time. Today Eric shares his wisdom with us on the blog. Please welcome Eric Nevins.
3 Things I Learned from Struggling to Find My Calling
by Eric Nevins
“Well, I’m off to waste another day of my life,” I thought as I rumbled down the road to my office. Nine years after graduating with a seminary degree and trying multiple avenues to enter various other professions, I was still working at a bank doing work that felt meaningless. Wasn’t there more to life than this, especially if I felt called to ministry? Turns out the answer was yes, and for the time being no.
Here are three things I learned to do from a twenty-year struggle to find my calling:
It may seem counter-intuitive to suggest that the first step to struggling with your calling well is to cultivate contentment but I’m here to tell you it’s true. A lack of contentedness will rob you of the opportunity to enjoy the season of life you are in.
For example, I once had the best job in the world and didn’t know it. In college, I worked as an in house security guard at a small benefits firm. This place was amazing. We had 24-hour access to all the soda, juice, and yogurt you could ask for. Lunches were free and leftovers plentiful. Any time of day you wanted food, it was not far off. The work required me to be available at the door to let the appropriate people in and to make a check of the doors every so often. That was it! The rest of our time was spent on the internet, reading books for school, and wading knee deep in theological waters with my coworkers.
When they outsourced our jobs I raged but really I was mourning. You never know what you had until it’s gone especially if you do not actively appreciate what you have at the time. Wherever you are, even if you feel hopelessly stuck, look for one good thing every day and let them build up to increase your contentment.
Get great at whatever you can
Work habits have a tendency to build on one another and develop into skills. For example, I spent over 10 years in the abyss known as customer service. Yes, I worked in a call center for over a decade. I still cannot believe it myself. Many days were full of boredom while saying the same thing over and over again. I started to think of my job like Name That Tune and go so good at it that I could tell what the customer needed within a few words. I never imagined that I was developing a skill of listening behind the words, developing an ear for tones that told me more was going on. I couldn’t have known that later I would use this skill to create a podcast that I love and has helped many. But it has.
Keep an eye toward the future
This one is so important. Even if you don’t know what your calling is or had some failures in what you thought was your calling, keep dreaming. Why? Because you never know what will catch on and capture your heart.
After graduating from seminary, I started a blog about Christians and politics, everything you’re not supposed to talk about. I quickly realized that I didn’t have as much to say as I thought but was able to get books from publishers. One of those books changed my life and convinced me that telling stories was more powerful than telling people what to think about complex issues. Years later, that conviction would lead me to start a little podcast called Halfway There that now has hundreds of thousands of downloads.
Life is a series of events and experiences that all stack on one another. If you’re having a hard time finding your calling ask the Lord, try everything, and don’t give up.
is the host of Halfway There, founder of Christian Podcasters Association and author of 8 Day Experience, a collection of short, contemplative Bible studies design to go deeper with the Lord.
Thanks for visiting By His Grace today! You also enjoy posts from other recent guests like Cheyenne Bell, Katie M. Reid, or Kate Battistelli. If you are struggling to make sense out of life you may want to check out my newly released best selling Bible Study.
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