How To: Integrate Your Faith with Your Career

Judith Taylor: Your faith is a vital part of who you are and it adds an exciting dimension to your personality.  Our culture is in dire need of people to stand up for what they believe so we can keep our freedom of speech and religion, and make a positive difference. (1964, retired public school teacher, now is an after school Good News Club Teacher)

Michelle Hughes: Spend time praying and studying the Bible so that God’s direction comes naturally.  Make time to be a part of a fellowship of believers. (1982, Registered Nurse/Healthcare)

Amanda Kuns: What I have learned since being in out in the workplace is how truly important it is not to just talk about our faith, but to really and truly live it.  Working in a secular place of employment has taught me firsthand that you can, in fact, make the greatest impact of a person’s life by genuinely showing Christ’s love and also by living with integrity.  The Lord has an amazing way of providing opportunities to talk specifically about Him. I think what is key, is to pray for the discernment for the right time to have this discussion, the right approach to take, and the right words to use. (2005, behavioral counselor)

Clayton Gibbs: Go find a mentor in the Christian community; don’t wait for them to find you.  Find someone who will challenge you and hold you accountable.  Find someone who will cheer you on and make you the best you can be in Christ. (1973, engineer)

Donna Skelly: It is extremely important to stay in the word of God, go to church, and get involved in a small group.  In the work world it is very easy to get caught up in climbing the ladder and fitting in with co-workers.  Always keep Christ first in your life, especially any dating relationships. (1971, Real Estate Broker)

Rachel Hammon: I think many college students graduate and are frustrated by the lack of jobs in the current job market. I would encourage them to always seek God first, and take the opportunities that you are presented. Maybe your first job opportunity isn’t the best one— take it if it feels like it is God’s will for you. You will learn and grow from every experience based on what you put into it. I had this philosophy during my years as a college student at OKWU and it worked for me. Seek God first in everything, even when it doesn’t seem to fit the “plan” you had made for your career. (2008, Elementary Music Specialist)

Jeannette Swindler: Apart from Christ, we are nothing. We live in a hurting world and the harvest is great, but the workers are few. God is looking for instruments to use in every field. Your career will be so much more rewarding if you are an instrument in the hands of the Master in whatever career you are in from accountant to missionary. (2012, studied psychology and now is in graduate school at Grace University)

Katie Burris: Surround yourself with people who can encourage you to be the best Christian in the work place while being the best employee you possible can. The Lord controls your future you just have to do your best work for him. (2005, Physical Therapist Assistant)

Steve Thompson: There cannot be a separation of your life. It’s all in or not. We must live a life of faith in every aspect of our life. The sooner you can figure this out, the more successful you will be. (2011, Assistant Pastor)

Valarie Callaghan: Listen more, talk less and let your actions speak louder than your words. (1991, Mananging Director at Bartlesville Community Center)

Erinleigh Kinyanjui: Your faith will sometimes make you feel like you are an outsider to co-workers. You might be known as the “Bible guy” in the office and therefore not included on much. But the best thing you can do for those around you is NOT to become someone you aren’t in order to fit in. The best thing you can do for them is to just be there and be open when they come to you. Be compassionate… But be wise. Don’t confuse the two. Don’t conform and call it being compassionate. Be wise. Be yourself. (1991, Managing Director, Fashion/Design)

Jeremy Dennis: I would advise students to eschew the idea of a duality in our lives, which is something that the world very much advocates. That the business world is its own entity and our personal lives, and therefore our faith, is an entirely separate world is a logical fallacy and with a little discernment we can see that the truth of our faith must absolutely shine through in every area of our lives. (2013, CRM Administrator)

Joy Haltom: Be bold!  We (Christians) are to be as lions in our communities and be seeking the opportunities to share our faith.  The more you share your faith the easier it becomes. (1981, CEO, finance/Insurance)

Teresa Haney: Being able to incorporate Biblical and Christian faith into daily living brings great joy and success to everyday life. In that process, you lead by example so that other people will see Christ in your actions and good deeds. (2006, Human Resource Manager)

Shannon Fair: Every career is a mission field. Developing a firm foundation in your faith is the core to everything you do in every aspect of your life. (2011, Child Welfare Specialist)

Dave Brown: Let your faith shine in your life through your actions and behavior. (1983, State Senator)

Donna Cooper: Let your light shine. Don’t be ashamed of the gospel of Christ. (1996, Medical Paralegal)

Shirley Johnson: Working at a career you enjoy makes having to go to work easier.   Don’t be afraid to encourage others and share how God helps you through your day, the good and the bad.  Don’t be afraid to apologize when you mess up. This speaks more than anything.  Try to show God working in your life when things aren’t always great, that also speaks to others, when they see how you handle difficulty with grace. Be gracious to others.  You never know what they are going through, but God does. Everyone has the potential to be a Child of God. He loves us all equally.  He created us all. We need to remember that as well.  (1979, Registered Nurse)

Sarah Boyer: Do it from the very beginning.  Be open about who you are and what you believe.  If you start out with that attitude, then people will know what you are about and will be watching to see the difference in you.  But, that means that you have to be seeking God and following Him.  Otherwise, your “lip service” will do more harm for the Gospel than help! (2000, Missionary)

Jerald Pollard: Your faith is your life.  Know that life is not what you do, but who you are.  Be who you are in Christ. (1969, Field Representative)

Jaimie Gieser: “Faith isn’t an assignment; it’s a lifestyle of depending on Jesus for everything; including Him, consulting Him and trusting in Him for everything, whether big or small. We need His direction everyday. I use to think that I needed to work at a Church to really be in the ministry and share my faith.  Now I realize that living by faith each day, wherever God places me, is where I need to be…” (2010, Office Manager)

Jessica Elsberry: Work hard at your job and give God the glory in words and actions so that your co-workers see a difference in you.  Remember you are an example of Christ in the flesh for many of your co-workers. (2001, Audit Associate)

Doug Morely: I have always said that no matter what job/career we pursue as followers of Christ, our primary vocation is being “Full-Time Christians” – at home, school and the work place.  Don’t wait until you graduate to start representing Christ, do it now, especially in an environment that can help strengthen your witness and increase your consistency as a follower/ambassador of Christ. (1988, Pastor)

Kent Israel: In the business world there are so many people that do not have a faith in Christ, this means that YOU are Christ to them.  Many times they have built barriers between themselves and the church, so they are not likely to wander into a church.  If you are competent in your chosen field, ethical in your dealings with everyone, and appear to be living differently than everyone else, then you will have the opportunity to share your faith in words with them.  If you fail to do the first three, your words will be empty.    The other advice I would give is that people are watching you more than you think.  You are Christ to them, so live that way! (2007, Landman)

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