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Ask Dave

Feel God's Pleasure

Kate says a position is opening up in her dream career path that she'd like to pursue. She's a mom now, and the job would be stressful. Is this something she should pursue despite the stress?

QUESTION: Kate in Virginia and her husband are finishing their final FPU class. A position is opening up in Kate’s dream career path that she’d like to pursue, but her life has changed. She’s a mom now, and the job would be stressful. Is this something she should pursue despite the stress?

ANSWER: I know a lot of musicians who are performers—some of them concert level and some of them simply “in the music business.” I think the level of stress is offset and really dissipates based on practice, based on experience and based on competency. My heart rate does not change when I pick up this microphone. When I first started 20 years ago, my stomach was in my throat and my ears were pounding when I went on the air every day. Now I can have this conversation with you in the coffee shop, or I can have it with you on the air, and it doesn’t change, but that’s based on experience and competence.

I didn’t want you to enter into something that… Stress always sounds to me like something I hate. I don’t want to be stressed all the time, but if it’s stress just because it’s new and pushing the edge and pushing the envelope, I’ve got to win, I’ve got to be good, and we’ve got to be excellent—I like that kind of stress. That’s the stress to win the Super Bowl.

I guess you’ve got to decide, don’t you? I don’t think anybody can make that decision but you and prayer before the Lord. I would not do it for the debt. I would do it because you love it, and you feel like God’s calling you to it.

You can work your way through this and get yourself under control based on what you’ve learned in the last nine weeks in Financial Peace University without you going to work, don’t you think? Obviously, if you go to work and you’re making a lot more money, it adds a bigger shovel to shovel more things out the door and more good things in the door. All of that would be wonderful, but it’s not going to be wonderful if you cry every day as you drive away from the kids because in your real heart of hearts, you wanted to be a full-time mom. I wouldn’t trade money for that. If your family was about to be foreclosed on, and you had $200,000 worth of debt, and your husband makes $50,000, we might have to do this for a while. We might talk about you doing it for the debt, but I don’t think you have to do it for your family’s financial future. The only reason I would do it is you feel like it’s God’s hand on you. You feel like it’s what you’ve trained for—you want to do it—and you feel like you can be a great mom while you’re doing that, and you’re not going to feel guilt-ridden every day. You’re not going to go down there and feel like you walked away from what you felt like was the most important—that kind of stuff. There’s a great line in Chariots of Fire. The lead actor says, “When I run, I feel God’s pleasure.” That’s what you need to do in your career. You need to feel God’s pleasure while you’re leaning into these things that you do to make a living.