I want to preface this post with an expression of sympathy for those who’ve experienced job loss or significant pay cuts in recent years, especially those experiencing such hardships through no fault of their own while working as diligent as possible to make ends meet to provide for their families.The fact that “there are starving children in Africa, living on less than a dollar a day” does not lighten the blow of job loss or minimize the issue of poverty here in America. So for those experiencing such hardship at the present time, my prayers are with you, and I trust that somehow, some way, in the Lord’s timing, He will provide for you and your loved ones. Stay diligent, seek Godly counsel and know that the words that follow are not for you in your current circumstances.
While a desire for success in one’s profession is a noble quality to maintain, the culture many of us grew up in over the past few decades did little in terms of cultivating an appreciation for hard work and discipline. These were the years of the entitlement mentality in which everyone got a trophy whether they worked hard or hardly worked. The result has been an overwhelming number of young professionals entering the workforce who’ve done little to prepare for future success, and still maintain the same attitude that won them a trophy for riding the bench all season in little league. To be fair, many of these young professionals are merely reflections of the leadership (or lack there of) they had during their childhood and teenage years. Whatever the case, I hope the words that follow can serve as both an encouragement and a resource to help produce more effective young leaders in the market place and perhaps change the trajectory of someone’s career path as they transition from an attitude of entitlement to an attitude of contentment.
First, it may be helpful to remember where you came from. Worthy causes can unknowingly become a source of greed and envy when there’s a paycheck attached. Many of those complaining about their wages today would have gladly served in a volunteer role a few years ago. A volunteer youth minister who later moves into a part-time paid position can quickly fall into sin by comparing his wages with those of the other youth guy down the road. Don’t compare yourself to others. Instead, reflect on where you were yesterday and celebrate how far God’s brought you to this point.
It’s also good to remember that a paycheck should always reflect less than you’re worth. If it doesn’t, it’s time to step up your game. The day you stop performing above your pay grade is the day you’ve begun to let complacency creep into your mind and subsequently, into your work ethic. Jesus taught that love always out gives the law, therefore, your love for what you’re doing should always “out give” the payroll department cutting your paycheck.
Consider this: If you can’t do what you’re doing like you love what you do, it may be time to consider a career change.
If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two… -Jesus