I fear what life has to offer. I see my parents get up each morning at five and return home each night at eight…. I see them worn out almost always and with no time for anything. That’s what I’m afraid of: having to live that kind of life. Every day when I wake up to go to the university and I see them, I am disillusioned to think, “Is that what I have to look forward to as a businessman?” Daily routines terrify me. I hate that the world requires them. Please help me! I am afraid of such a sad life.

Dear Friend,

It is wise to contemplate the ramifications of the career that you are preparing for. The long hours of your parents’ jobs are definitely a disadvantage of their work. You don’t say so, but it sounds like you are preparing to follow in their footsteps and possibly take over their business in the future. Because of their expectations, you may feel that you have no other choice.

Although many people have few choices and end up with jobs that are boring and physically demanding, a university education usually opens up more opportunities. Since you are already attending the university, your future has great potential. It may seem that your current course of study will limit you to specific professions, but a university degree in any course of study will prepare you for an unlimited range of professions. We often comment that most of our five children are involved in work that didn’t even exist when they were growing up.

If you do feel that you must follow in your parents’ footsteps, the important thing to remember is that you will be able to use technology that didn’t exist a few years ago. While you are at the university, you have the perfect opportunity to study ways that you could revolutionize the processes that the business uses. Of course, it will take a number of years to incorporate the changes, and you may have some negotiating to do with your parents (if the business currently belongs to them).

If you cannot think of any options that could make your current plans for future work more exciting to you, then we suggest that you explore other alternatives. If you decide that some other career would be better suited to your personality and strengths, then it is extremely important that you carefully research the job market and potential earnings for that career. It is not a good choice unless it is relatively certain that you can support yourself and your future family with your earnings. One reason that so many people have jobs that do not satisfy them is because they understand that supporting their families is even more important than having fulfilling careers.

God knows what will be best for you, so you need His wisdom. If you will commit your life to Him and follow in His steps, then you can trust Him to lead you into a career and life that will satisfy you. Those who trust in Him do not need to be afraid.(1)

We wish you the best,

1 Ps 56:11