My son-in-law is a very impressive guy. He's a decorated Lt.Col. in the Marines. Imagine how tough you have to be, to be a Marine ... much less earning such a high rank at a young age. When we first met I asked why he joined the corps. Without hesitation he answered, "It's a calling."

Wow. Not a job, or career, but a calling. How fortunate to do something you love and were meant to do. And, how fortunate for the rest of us that young men and women hear that calling and rise to the occasion.

But, what about other ways to make a living?

A friend spoke of a friend of hers passing and the fact she had worked 55 years at the same fast food restaurant. For someone like me that's moved 22 times and lived all over the country from Virginia, Miami, Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, Orlando, Chicago, Los Angeles, and North Carolina, the idea of one place, much less, one job for 55 years is puzzling. So, while pondering how someone enjoys 55 years of , "You want fries with that?", a concept came to mind.

In the Nightingale Conant program, "Dream Job," the author Dan Miller gives a great overview of what a calling is.

He states the difference between Vocation, Career, and Job.

While on the surface these three words seem to mean the same, they are quite different. Vocation carries the biggest meaning. Translated from Latin the core meaning is to call- therefore, the calling. This is the purpose, the nagging inner desire, the big plan. There can be many careers used to support this calling. For example, a person that is called to be a healer may be a doctor, and the many specialties involved, or a nurse. And, there can be many job descriptions that work to satisfy a higher calling such as an orderly. So, the task of changing beds and bed pans may be a means to fulfill that higher purpose. That position of orderly may only look like a job, but it may be the engine that drives a vocation.

Back to our fast food lady, the person who worked for over five decades everyday at the same counter handing out trays of soft drinks, fries, and sandwiches, was she just doing a job? Or was she motivated by a higher calling to serve others happily, or maybe something greater, to send her kids to college, pay off a mortgage, enjoy the American dream. We don't know her higher calling. People may not know your calling by seeing the uniform of your job.

Whether you wear a coat and tie, or shorts driving a brown truck, no one knows your vocation. But, you do. Is your daily routine one of the many gears turning to answer your calling? Or, is it really just a job.

Author's Bio: 

Joe Nuckols
Author | Speaker | Broadcaster | Entrepreneur
Host of Nightingale Conant's My Power Podcast
Joe created the world's first all motivation 24/7 radio format , WNN - Winners News Network - that was syndicated nationally. He has been on stage with many leading speakers such as Zig Ziglar, Brian Tracy, and more. He received Entrepreneur of the Year award in Fort Lauderdale. Many national publications such as People, Newsweek, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and more have carried stories about his career. He is an award winning advertising writer and winner of journalism awards.