Pursuing Your Passion with Confidence | Ashley Varner

Pursuing Your Passion with Confidence

There’s a myth that only pastors and missionaries are called by God. Nothing could be further from the truth.

You can pursue the God-given passions in your heart and you can pursue them with confidence!

Podcast:

Resources Mentioned:

Pursuing Your Passion with Confidence
Your Passion + HIS Purpose Workbook
Renew180 (formerly 180Confidence)

The Myth of Full-Time Ministry

When I was growing up, I always thought that I’d end up in full-time ministry.

What is full-time ministry? That’s a great question. When people talk about full-time ministry, they are referring to people who do ministry as their profession. These people are getting paid to do ministry, and they usually do not have another job.

As a child, I was surrounded by people who were in full-time ministry, and I thought that was what my life’s calling would be. Sometimes I thought that would mean being a missionary, becoming a pastor’s wife, leading worship at a big church, or even feeding and teaching orphans in a third-world country.

I had a lot of different ideas about what full-time ministry would mean for me, but instead, I found myself in the business sector as an entrepreneur. At times, I struggled to control my thoughts about this because of the emotions that I felt about not being in full-time ministry.

Are you experiencing the same thing?

If you are a Christian woman in the business field, I want you to pay attention to this because there can be a real struggle with negative emotions when you find yourself called by God but not to a full-time ministry.

Ministry can be found in the business arena

Let’s get one thing straight: ministry can absolutely be found in the business arena.

When I used to compare myself to those in full-time ministry, I felt discouraged because they were doing wonderful things for God, and I felt like I was just punching a clock. For me, these emotions were inspired by the thoughts that told me that my calling was less important because it didn’t conform to traditional full-time ministry.

We have to remember that God gives us all different gifts, and He wants us to pursue those gifts to the best of our ability.

Sometimes women tell me, “Ashley, I don’t feel like I’m using my ministry gifts.” I like to remind these women about what Paul said in regards to the church being a body made up of many parts.

If every part was a hand, how would the body walk? If every part was an eye, how would the body hear?

There are things that you can do and people that you can reach in the business sector that pastors and missionaries cannot. You have a circle of influence that you can use for God’s glory.

There are a lot of benefits to serving God in the business sector. These benefits are things like:

  • Freedom. When you’ve built a strong business with a strong team, you have the freedome to take off time or work your schedule around things that need to be done.
  • Funds. When you’ve succeeded financially in the business arena, you can help fund ministry. My husband and I love being able to be generous towards the works of the kingdom. It’s an investment, not just a tax write off. People working in full-time ministry oftentimes do not have abundant funds and need the support of those in the business arena.
  • Increased Reach. There are going to be people like coworkers and employees that you can reach even if they are people who would never come into a church. The way you live your life will show them Christ.

When God calls you to work in the business arena, He isn’t rejecting you from the full-time ministry arena. He is saying, “I’ve given you dreams and specific skills, and I want you to use them to honor me.”

Change Your Perspective

If you are like me, being in the business arena instead of the full-time ministry arena can give you a host of negative thoughts and emotions, but I want to help you change your perspective on what it means to be a Christian woman in business.

Our emotions stem from our thoughts. If you are feeling guilty or insecure in the role God has placed you in, start viewing full-time ministry a little differently. If you are a Christian, you are in full-time ministry. Your life is a ministry.

In my program, Renew180 (formerly 180Confidence), I’ll show you how you can step into your God-given purpose and pursue your calling with confidence. And it all starts with your mindset.

Being able to shift your thinking to change the way you feel about the calling God has given you makes all the difference.

You are Called

I need you to know that you are called. You are called by God to make a difference for Him. You are called to reach people where you are at. You can see a harvest right where you are now.

God has given each of us passions and desires and struggles. He has a reason, and that reason is His purpose.

You might be asking yourself, “Why am I here? I like my career, but I want to do more for God.” You need to know that there are people in your world that only you can reach.

Don’t take that lightly.

You have gifts and tools and talents that the body of Christ needs. When you’ve made an effort to grow your skills and develop the passions that God has put into your heart, there will be people out there that need what you have.

It is your duty to give back what God has given you.

That might look a little different than traditional ministry. It might mean that you help plan an event at your church or develop the curriculum for Sunday school. It could mean a lot of different things.

You are needed

The body of Christ needs YOU. I’ve heard a lot of people say that they don’t need to go to church because they can worship God at home or from their boat. And sure, that is true. But what they forget is that the body of Christ needs them.

The church needs you along with your skills and abilities. There are a lot of roles in the church that I believe women in the business arena can step into and fill.

You might say, “I’m just a marketer,” or, “I own a secular business. How can I use that in ministry?”

There are a lot of ways you can help, my friend!

If you’re a marketer, now more than ever, the church needs you. If you’re a nurse, you have skills that the church needs. If you’re a baker, your skills can build the kingdom. No matter what your skills are, you are needed.

Who is Your Mission Field?

If you have a secular business and want to know how that can be used for the Lord, I want you to join Renew180 (formerly 180Confidence). This six-month mastermind specifically for professional women who want to grow their confidence in a specific area of their lives.

This program is a hybrid model, so there are pre-recorded videos to watch on your own time as well as group coaching calls to dive deeper into building confidence and living out your calling. We’re going to be talking about relationships, body confidence, and more.

If you feel like you’ve been successful in certain areas of your life but still feel like you’re struggling in other areas, this is going to be the program for you. It’s specifically designed for professional women who want Bible-based coaching. This is for you!

My husband and I have been successful business owners for over fifteen years, and we run a seven-figure business. We have a large team, so I have learned to not only create confidence through my thinking and my identity in Christ but also how to use that calling to reach people.

That’s what I’ll be teaching you if you join me for Renew180 (formerly 180Confidence). There is an application to join, so not everyone will be able to participate. This application helps to determine if this program is a perfect fit for you, so make sure to get on the waitlist and be the first to find out when the program opens.

Excuses: The 3 Opposites of Confidence

There are three opposites of confidence that Christian women oftentimes use as excuses for not stepping into the calling that God has placed on their lives.

Insecurity

Women who struggle with insecurity oftentimes say things like, “You don’t know my past,” or, “I don’t think that I’m good enough.” The idea of “not enough” is usually the basis for insecurity.

We think we are not smart enough, talented enough, thin enough, successful enough, spiritual enough, experienced enough, and so on. This is a confidence killer, and it can be an excuse.

When struggling with insecurity, it can be easier to say, “No, I am satisfied with where I am right now and not making a difference for the Lord,” instead of saying, “Yes, I know that I’m here in this secular job for a reason, and I want to use it to build the Kingdom.”

I want to suggest that perhaps God has allowed things in your past because He trusts you to use them for His kingdom and His glory.

Fear

This opposite of confidence stems from a question: “What if I fail?”

The idea of failing is a Catch22 because we only want to go after a calling if we know we can’t fail but the only way to find out if we’ll fail is by pursuing the calling.

What we end up doing is preventing ourselves from trying so we don’t have to make mistakes or experience judgment from other people.

When we allow ourselves to be controlled by this, we’re allowing our thoughts to run wild. We’re saying, “I don’t want to take my thoughts captive when it comes to fear,” so the fear drives our emotions and keeps us from doing anything.

Know that inactivity is the same as activity. You’re either moving forward or falling backward.

If you struggle with this, you can start creating thoughts that will grow confidence in you instead. Confidence doesn’t come from outside success. It comes from our thoughts. If you want to be confident, you have to take your thoughts captive.

Scarcity

The thought that fuels scarcity is, “I need to be something more before God can use me or before I can feel confident in my calling.”

The root of this is believing that what someone else has takes away from what you have. Yet, the God I know has more than enough. Whenever we find ourselves feeling scarcity, we aren’t trusting God to be enough for us.

When you change your thinking, the excuses start to fly out the door.

Do you want help with changing your thinking? I know that it’s easier said than done, but if you want someone to come alongside you and help you, that is where Renew180 (formerly 180Confidence) comes in. If you want to learn how to pursue your calling with confidence, make sure to check that out.

Conclusion

An old song by Avalon says, “Your life in Christ can be the greatest story ever told.”

Notice that it says “in Christ” and not just “your life.” You are unique, and your calling/mission field is as unique as you are. Let go of feeling guilty and insecure because you work in business rather than full-time ministry. Wherever you are at is a place where you can have influence and impact.

You are important to the kingdom of God.

It’s time that you and I step with confidence into our calling knowing that we are needed and significant.

If you are struggling with insecurity, send me an email. I would love to hear from you and talk to you.

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- Ashley Varner

it’s my goal to reach every Christian mom with the truth that God wants to transform their life by renewing their mind.

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