My second year of College had not even began and my mum had already started asking me to apply for internships. In hindsight, she was right on time but I had not even declared a major so applying for jobs seemed a bit presumptuous to me. What would I say at interviews when I didn’t even have a clear answer to the simple question: “what are you studying?” My mum reminded me often that deadlines were fast approaching and I had to apply for at least one internship. It became a prayer point for both of us and her weekly inquisitive reminders switched from “found anything interesting?” to “have you been saying the St Joseph prayer?” My mum had been saying “A prayer to St Joseph to Know One’s Vocation in Life” for my siblings and I and understandably, she felt it was time for me to start praying the same prayer for myself. The prayer quickly became part of my daily life, and the words were so inspiring that they helped sustain my faith in that season.
We had just finished Thursday prayers at church, the lights were out and the small chapel had emptied out save for myself and a girl who was seated a few pews in front of me. I was talking to God about my career path when the girl came up to me. “We’re having a get-together downstairs, you should come.” I nodded with a smile and said thank you, while trying to decide if I should honour the invitation or just go home as planned. I had met the girl a few times prior and she was always so kind, so I decided to go downstairs. A few minutes into the gathering, I was walking my way through the room when I spotted someone I had seen at church weeks back. I went up to her to say hello and somehow, we started talking about careers. She told me what she was doing that summer and although I didn’t fully understand what she described, I felt drawn to it. Shortly after, I stole away from the event using one of my mum’s tricks, got home and began googling. I read many pieces about the girl’s summer internship and it felt like one of those aha moments. I remember thinking, “this is it, this is where I want to begin my career.”
I am so grateful to have met both the girl that invited me ‘downstairs’ and the girl who shared her interests with me but I am even more grateful for God, who orchestrated these encounters. In the past month, I’ve had conversations with friends who desire clarity regarding their career paths. When I asked them if they had prayed about it, their reactions suggested that they had not heavily considered that option. While ideating this piece, an old sermon by Myles Munroe popped up on my Youtube homepage. I clicked to watch and heard something relevant to today’s topic: “God hid everything a thing is supposed to become in itself. So your future is not ahead of you. It’s trapped on the inside. A forest is not ahead of the seed, it’s in the seed. Your future is in you. It’s been there all along but there’s too much noise.” Ask God to silence the noise and reveal the career path that would enable you walk in your purpose. I must acknowledge that hearing from God is not always the easiest thing. However, God sees your seeking heart and will direct and redirect you. In addition, career paths are not always linear and stories authored by God usually involve one plot twist or the other. I make these disclaimers to say that one or two prayers would not magically put you on a career path that would set you for life, whatever that means to you. Yet, you should pray about your calling, make a decision about where to start your career journey and don’t spend too long brooding over the decision. Tarry in God’s presence, seek and keep seeking. The most important thing is that God is involved in the process.
Proverbs 3:6-Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
“I cannot do everything but I can do something. I must not fail to do the something that I can do.”-Helen Keller
“I describe a career path as a zigzag not as a ladder.”-Denise Morrison