Creative Leadership

What’s More Important: Your Salary or Your Purpose?

In college, I had a friend named Carl, who came to the same film and media classes I attended. We were friends and had the same goal – to work in the entertainment and media business. While we were in college, we both had different jobs and during that time, Carl worked in a furniture store. When we graduated, I started packing to pursue my purpose, but Carl got a nice offer from the owner of the furniture store. So he decided to take the offer, pay off a few bills, and “catch up with me later.”

It’s been 37 years, and Carl still hasn’t shown up.  Every time he was ready to leave the furniture store and come to Los Angeles, his boss offered him a raise. After a few years, he was married with kids and got into the retirement program, and the promotions and raises were a big help. But every time he accepted those raises, he was trading a piece of his dream.

After 10 or 20 years, the window of opportunity closed. Now, it’s too late to pursue that dream, and he’s left managing a furniture store in the Midwest. It’s a good job with a certain status and position. He’s a respected member of his community, but he’s not living out the purpose he planned.

What about you? Which is more important: the risk of pursuing your dream and purpose in life or the security of a salary?

It’s a simple question with not-so-simple answers. But either way, it’s up to you.

What’s your answer?

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  1. Sometimes a person’s purpose can be fulfilled in multiple different ways than we had thought.

    If we are called to God’s purpose, maybe the Midwest is where He needed someone, and Carl may have answered that call.

    Just be sure your purpose is the same that God has for you.

  2. I think purpose is the most important thing. Hopefully the money would follow at some point. I can’t help but believe the regrets of selling your dream would be a slow, self-inflicted death to your heart and soul.

  3. Its easy to identify whether or not you are on your path of purpose. Is it a struggle, painful, keeps you on your knees, requires lots of Faith yet fulfilling then you’re probably on the right path.

  4. After High School, my Dad decided to drag me along in his office to work with him as his assistant in the accounting field.. The first few months were fabulous because i was earning some money with benefits, but after a year i felt they was something missing, I never looked forward to going to work in that same old office and doing the same old balance sheet and trading account over and over again! So i began to do some soul searching and discovered that as much as in was earning a lot of money at a young age – it did not bring any fulfillment or strong sense of purpose, i wasn’t happy!So one day i just decided to call it quits and started from scratch.It was worth it because today i’m making a difference by living a Purposeful Life influencing my community using media

  5. I believe our purpose in life is far more important than how much money we make. The satisfaction, and joy that comes with fulfilling a purpose can never tantamount the short-lived happiness that’s associated with making a lot of money and having a high ranking status in society. Man’s purpose in this life cannot be defined in a job, marriage or the like. There’s more to us than these traits we share with the average domestic animal. We have also been called to work for the Lord. To do something of eternal value. Something that’ll earn us eternal rewards, and help us enter eternity hearing “Well done” from the Heavenly Father. That’s why I admire Dag Heward-Mills for his push to involve as many people as possible in working for the Lord. In his book “Many are called”, he pens this passion and encourages everyone to do something for Jesus. Great book! So check it out 🙂

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