I recently moved back to my home town about a month ago. Before moving home, I had worked in a community mental health agency for 8 months. It was my first job after graduate school and I learned so much from it.
Within about 3 months of working there I had this feeling that community mental health work just wasn’t for me. It wasn’t my passion. I could do my job well, but it was very draining work and took an emotional toll on me.
I learned so much from working in mental health, but I learned more because I was working in a setting that I didn’t feel called to:
1. You can do good work somewhere even if your heart isn’t in it.
I could do my job well, but it wasn’t nearly as fulfilling for me as it was for some of my coworkers. I remember one of my coworkers who said, “I love this work so much. I drive home everyday with a huge smile on my face.” And I said, “Are you being sarcastic right now because I can’t tell?” The point is that person put their heart into what they were doing because it was their passion and purpose in life. I did my job and drove home happy knowing that I had given a good day’s work for a decent day’s pay. Then I cranked up the Led Zeppelin and rolled my windows down dreaming of finding my passion.
2. Sometimes you have to “put in your time” to get a job you’re passionate about.
Coming out of graduate school, I had zero experience in social work besides internships. As a new graduate with mounds of debt and itching to use my degree I had to take a job to build my skill set and resume. I learned so much about assessing and diagnosing patients, but I could tell that my heart wasn’t in it. If I would have tried to “hold out” for a job that I really wanted I may have never gotten employed. And besides, at that point I didn’t know what I really wanted. Don’t give up on your dream job, but sometimes you have to take a detour.
3. Take chances and have faith.
My mom is actually the one who told me about the job here in my hometown. She
encouraged commanded me to apply “now” so I did. The funny thing is that my mom also set me up to apply for another job which I worked throughout college. Daniel and I had been wanting to move back to our hometown, but we weren’t getting any job leads. After waiting and praying for 6 months, he finally got a great opportunity so we moved back hoping and trusting God that I would find a job. And that job that my mom told me to apply for is the one I got. It’s a non profit job and it’s serving people who have ALS/Lou Gehrig’s disease. The same disease that my Grandpa died with 2 months ago.
God works in mysterious ways. Mysterious mostly because we don’t know His plan. Works is the second most important word in that sentence. God is first. God works.
God uses the desires of our heart to accomplish His plan in our life. When I found out I got this job, there was more than happiness that I felt at the prospect of getting a paycheck. I felt peace. Peace that God has truly blessed and granted this desire of my heart.
“Our hearts are restless until they rest in Thee.” -St. Augustine
Linking up with Blessed is She for this week’s theme: Heart.