In the last post, we talked about how to leave an organization well. I can't overstate how important that is. It can also be really difficult because of the emotions involved; confusion, sadness, martyrdom, excitement, anxiety, hurt, and a million others. Regardless, you MUST leave well. You MUST do your best to not just LEAVE, but intentionally BLESS on your way out.
It may not be true, but I believe that you can't start well unless you leave well first. Why? Because how you leave speaks to your character, integrity, work ethic, and leadership. It's easy to just get out of dodge and impress your new organization where people don't know you. But...
Before you worry about starting there, focus about being faithful here.
That isn't the focus of this post though. Today, I want to give you some filters to use as you determine what the next place is.
How do you decide what job is the right fit for you?
What organization will help you thrive and make your greatest contribution?
Man, there is so much that goes into this decision. We won't have the space to do it justice, but we can start to color in the lines.
As a starting point though, think about this...
Your life is about more than just finances and location. Think higher. Think better.
The world has shrunk. You are a flight away from anywhere on the globe. Think about it. You can work anywhere. Literally. Anywhere.
Have you always wanted to live/work in Europe or Brazil? Do you love the city? Would your dream be to serve the people in Tanzania? How about Montana? I'm not saying you have to move, but allow your heart to go there before you shut the door.
Before you put God in a box, expand your horizons and take some time to dream. Is there a job that you've always wanted to do? Is there a location that you've always wanted to live? Is there an organization you've always wanted to work for?
The timing may not be right for this season, but it's worth checking the handle to see which doors are open and which are locked.
So, now that we've determined that:
- We are not going to make decisions solely on money.
- We are not going to make decisions solely on location.
- We are going to allow our hearts to dream about possibilities and not focus on limitations.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself that may help to bring some options into focus as well as disqualify others.
1. What do you want to invest the next season of your life into?
This next season may be several years or several decades. In the latter case, your initial job will be only the first iteration that will inevitably adjust over the years, but will be the one you will live in. This is the one you will sign up for. This is the one your boss will pay you to do. It MUST be something you are passionate about as well as competent to do.
You owe it to yourself and the organization to be confident that you are the right person for the job.
So before you sign up for just some job, take some time to have clarity on what you want to invest a portion of your life doing. What would fuel you to go to work every day?
2. Can you align with the vision and values of the organization?
This one is a biggie.
Many of you are in the ministry context (me too), so let me put it this way.
Do you align with how the church:
- Expresses worship during services.
- Spends money overall between production, discipleship, community engagement, buildings, branding, etc.
- Integrates with the local community.
- Navigates work/life balance.
- Views the role of your spouse in the ministry.
- Develops you as a Christ follower and leader.
- Utilizes best practices of other churches but keeps it's unique voice. Remix over copy and paste.
- Corrects unbiblical behavior amongst the staff.
- Balances the tension between reaching the outsider and raising the insider.
These are just a few. There are many others.
Don't turn a blind eye to areas where your heart may be out of sync with your leadership. As time goes on, it will only get harder, not easier. It's CRITICAL to go to a place where you can be the most authentic version of yourself. Only then will you be able to really pour your soul into your work.
Most of the time, these potential issues have nothing to do with right or wrong. Simply preference or style.
But you don't want to be in a position where you feel you have to go against what you personally value to fall in line.
3. How does your spouse feel about it?
Many times God's voice sounds a whole lot like my wife. My wisest moments have been when I listened. I haven't always listened.
She's not perfect. She has off moments like any of us, but she knows me. She prays. We are a team. I believe God speaks to her. I'd be an idiot to not hear and understand her perspective.
From a super practical standpoint, you DO NOT want to drag your family somewhere your spouse does not want to go. It will make an already difficult season feel impossible. For a transition to go well, it's so important that your family goes as a team.
4. Lastly, what do you feel God is speaking to you about it?
Have you taken time to pray? Not 5 minutes. I'm talking turn off your phone, your tv and anything else that will distract you. Take a day or days and ask God. Then, be still and allow Him to speak to your heart.
This is a HUGE decision! You don't want to make it on your own. Instead of asking God to bless your decision, ask HIM what HE wants to you do and DO THAT. If you will, it will already be blessed.
It's worth taking the time to do this right.
One last thought if you are a parent.
These are the moments when you get to create anchors for your kids. This is your chance to show them how to make BIG decisions. Not emotional ones. Ones that honor the Lord.
These are the moments that you get to show them that obedience and wisdom begins and ends with following God. If you do this right, you show them how to do it. You show them that God can be trusted even when it's confusing.
You show them how to be honorable. You show them how to control what you can control and leave the rest to God. You show them that attitude is a decision.
There is a lot on the line. There is a lot we didn't talk about but I hope that this will get you tracking in the right direction.
Hit me up if I can help more.