One question addressed in the book “The Gospel at Work” is one asked regularly by high school and college graduates: How do I choose a job?
Authors Sebastian Traeger and Greg Gilbert begin by suggesting that, in contrast to the common secular view that finding a job is primarily about self-fulfillment/enjoyment, the Christian perspective is that work is first and foremost about loving and obeying God, then serving others, and then finally about personal enjoyment.
To that end, the authors suggest six questions to ask when deciding a job. The order of these questions is important. The first three are “must-haves.” The last three are “nice-to-haves.”
- Does this job glorify God? Most jobs fit into this category, but it does rule out some jobs which might be inherently sinful (hit man, drug runner, abortion doctor, etc.).
- Does this job permit me to live a godly life? Some jobs might not be inherently sinful but would still require sacrifices (to family, church, etc.) which could lead you away from God.
- Does this job provide for my needs and allow me to be a blessing to others? One of the requirements for our jobs is that it allows us to provide for ourselves and our families. Some things we love to do, but don’t make money, should remain hobbies.
- Does this job benefit society in some way? If the answer is “yes” to the first three it probably is to this one as well. For some jobs this will be more evident, but almost all jobs fit this bill in some way.
- Does this job take advantage of my talents? God has gifted each of us with talents and abilities. It’s always nice when our jobs align with these talents, but it’s not always the case. Sometimes we have to do jobs which are hard that require us to rely on the strength and grace of God (see Moses.)
- Is this job something I want to do? Our desires and interests matter and we live in a day and age where we can ask this question. But this is a luxury of our time and not a requirement in a job. If you can ask this question, you are blessed. If not, remember to do whatever God gives you to do with all your might as though serving the Lord.