Hope for your financial life and beyond

How to Resolve the What Career Should I Have Dilemma

Have you ever asked yourself the question, What career should I have?  If so, you know the answers aren’t that obvious. Coming to a decision about what career bests fits you can be quite a dilemma, no matter if you are right out of high school or in your mid-30s looking for a career change.

It sure was for me.

what career should i haveAfter high school graduation, everyone wanted to know what I was going to study in college. I didn’t know so I just told everyone I’d be taking my general education requirements first and decide on a degree track later. Seemed like the wise thing to do considering I didn’t know what else to do.

In the end, I chose psychology and counseling as a course of study. I didn’t know where that would ultimately take me later in life. All I knew at the time was that it matched up with my personality, my ability to listen and my desire to help people.

My chosen field of study didn’t lead me to a counseling career per se. After grad school, I ended up in education, first as a teacher and then as a principal at a small private school. Years later, I laid down my career as an educator and am now working as a youth pastor. While I’m not counseling in the strictness definition of the word, my education did prepare me in a lot of ways for things I faced (and am facing) when it comes to dealing with families and kids.

So in college, when I asked the What career should I have question, did I end up choosing the right one? Was my path of study appropriate, especially since I didn’t end up pursing that career in the end? Could I have gone through some steps to make a better choice that would have led to a career that aligned with my educational goals?

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What Does God Want Me to Do with My Life?

Hidden Nuggets Series #104 – “…love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind…‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37-38)

what does God want me to doAt some point you’ve probably asked the question, What does God want me to do? You may have thought about it in relation to your life in general or because of some problem or big decision you were facing. Either way, it seems like a difficult question to answer. How can we figure out what the God of the universe wants for us?

One of the things I love about the Bible is its clarity. Sure it has some cryptic passages and certain issues require a lot of study. But not when it comes to figuring out this question. God’s answers are clear, concise and to the point.

The answer to the question What does God want me to do, initially depends on where you are at in your life. If you don’t have a relationship with Him there is a first step He wants for you. After that, there are two other steps He’d have you take. I’ll take them one at a time.

What Does God Want Me to Do First?

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How to Make a Good Decision Every Time

Hidden Nuggets Series #79 – “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise.” – Ephesians 5:15

(This bonus Hidden Nuggets article is dedicated to my kids. May you always make good decisions.)

how to make a good decisionHave you ever been in a difficult situation and wondered how to make a good decision? Silly question I know. Who hasn’t been in a tough spot like that?

We face decisions every day – small and large. Some are routine and have little to no impact on our lives. Others weigh heavy on our minds, causing us to lose sleep at night. Decisions can chart the course of our present and define our path for the next 10 years.

Whether they are in the moment decisions or ones that take time to think through, it is difficult to know how to make a good decision. How do you enter the decision making process – blindly or with your eyes wide open? What do you draw on to help you make a good decision, one that will be profitable for your future?

I’ve often thought my decisions were pretty good, even though there have been some I regret. My big issue is getting to the best decision quickly enough. I usually take a long time to come to a conclusion on weighty matters. Sometimes that frustrates me. At times I’ve missed the opportunity entirely because of my procrastination.

What if there was template that could teach you how to make a good decision? What if you could get instant clarity in some cases on whether to move in a direction? Would that be worth it?

I’ve found such a template [that I can’t take credit for] and it all rests in one broad question and three deeper questions you have to ask.

Our Problem in Making Good Decisions

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Does God Want Me To Attend College?

Hidden Nuggets Series #54 – “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.” – Luke 2:52

should i go to collegeI’m wrapping up my series on college this week with a rather odd question, something that a high school junior or senior might be asking – “Should I go to college and does God care?” Mom and dad sure have made it clear they think it’s important as they’ve been pounding the table for months to get those applications finished. What about God? Does He even have an opinion on college?

To those with no religious inclination this may seem silly. Why consult a higher power at all about a non-spiritual issue like whether to or where to attend college? I understand that line of thinking.

However, for those like myself with a relationship with God it’s huge for several reasons.

Should I Go to College?

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When a Snowfall Brings Panic, Excitement and Pressure

Atlanta traffic in snow II

Downtown Atlanta Tuesday Afternoon

You may have heard a fairly substantial snowfall swept through the southeast Tuesday dropping anywhere from 1-3 inches of snow in greater Atlanta where I live. For those of you living in a mountain region in the west or north of the Mason-Dixon line in the east it’s OK to scoff. I grew up in Ohio so I know a major snowstorm when I see one.

This wasn’t it.

Except for Southerners it is. We simply don’t have the equipment to deal with the road conditions as they deteriorate.

Few salt trucks.

Fewer snowplows.

Still fewer drivers with experience in snowy road conditions.

This storm left many motorists stranded and children stuck at school throughout the night. Many roadways are still a parking lot this morning, as ice developed overnight in the below 20 degree weather.

There is a wide range of emotions produced on a days like this. I’ve noticed that which one people express depends on their situation and who they are. Furthermore, and more importantly, how people deal with the situation and handle their emotions may influence how they view the outcome of the entire day.

Emotion 1: Panic

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Don’t Chase Hungry Bears Through the Woods

bear

Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I turned over in my sleeping bag longing for a few extra minutes of sleep. It had been a great hike the day before but my body was rejecting the thought of carrying that backpack on another days trek. Not this early in the morning. Light had begun to filter through the canopy of trees and into our tent. I sensed it would not be much longer before my stomach would expect breakfast. Yep, there it is – grumbling.

Our young dog was lying at the foot of the tent snuggled up like a child between my wife and I. Her legs twitched back and forth as no doubt she recounted in her dreams the events of the previous day’s hike. What sites, smells and sounds she had encountered on this her first weekend backpacking trip. She was snoring, fast asleep until she heard the same thing I did.

Her head snapped up, ears on full alert.

Perhaps it’s just our backpacking friends in the tent a few feet away getting up and ready. But a closer listen revealed it didn’t sound like tent noises. More like scratching and clawing.

I’m beginning to rouse my wife when I hear my friend zip open his tent. Then something that sounded like a thud, followed by scrambling bodies and my friend uttering something like “Oh crap.” I quickly zipped open our tent to see one of our food sacks swinging like a pendulum on the limb we had secured it to the night before. Funny, we had hoisted up two food sacks last evening. Why was there only one now?

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