Grounding our identity in Christ is the key to overcoming the frequent temptation to seek worth in our work. In this updated post, we are exploring how to find our worth in Christ and not just in what we do. Our work has value, but our worth? That’s rooted in who we are in Christ, not in our achievements or failures. 

A woman in white pants sits on stool working on computer illustrates article on the temptation to find your worth in your work.


Today I am updating a post I wrote a year after my first book released. This post continues to draw search traffic, which tells me I am not alone in this struggle with self-work, identity, and work. Over the years, God and I have had many moments of soul searching and re-aligning my heart when I catch myself seeking my worth in my work.

I have come to understand that revisiting our deeper struggles with the Lord—continuing to allow the Holy Spirit to do the live-long work of transformation is discipleship of the heart.


Are You Looking for Your Worth in Your Work?


Today is time for a little soul talk. 


  • Have you ever felt like you haven’t earned the right to say “No”?
  • Have you felt like you must get further, be better, move faster. . .  before you can give yourself time to breathe? 
  • Maybe you’ve felt the pressure to prove yourself through your work.


Insecurity opens the door to pressures our souls were never meant to carry: the weight of our own performance. The “can’t-say-no” pressure to perform is an old habit I thought I’d left behind.


Reflecting on lessons of the past few years, I finally understood something important. Something my soul needed to see.


Though I’ve been writing and speaking for years, I’m fairly new to this author and editor life. Working in the publishing industry is a larger arena where the pressure to grow platform, reach, and numbers is very real.


I felt I hadn’t earned the right to say “No” to any possible opportunity to write, speak, teach, or train. And so, I tried to do it all.


Maybe you’ve heard a similar accusation whispered to your soul in a vulnerable moment. A moment when your job felt too big, your responsibility too great, or your gap too wide.


Fear is a relentless taskmaster if we allow it to drive our work and define our value. Share on X


Have you ever wrestled with your yes’s and no’s, only to realize you’ve slipped into the flesh pattern of seeking your worth through the things you accomplish? Even when you tried not to. Me too.


Friend, this is a hard one. A temptation that slips in quietly when you’re preoccupied with your work.


Seeking Our Worth in Our Work is a Soul Temptation


Desktop flatlay The desire to do our best can morph into a determination to prove ourselves, especially when we are in a new job, new season or new field. Or anytime exhaustion, insecurity, expectation, or comparison makes us worry that we aren’t good enough.


Our schedule careens out of control because our effort doesn’t feel enough. We can’t afford to miss an opportunity or make a mistake. The job never feels finished. Social media’s ever-changing platforms continually add new tasks and obligations that become part of work in my field.


When the next milestone seems out of reach…so we try harder and run faster. Can you relate?


Friend, to tell you the truth, I’m uncomfortable making this post all about me. Something in me balks at revealing my struggles or shining a light on my weaknesses. It’s that pesky issue called pride, another soul temptation to talk about another day.


But here’s the beautiful thing, humility frees me to be brave. I’ve received  unexpected blessings from this writing life that have softened my edges and given me courage to simply be who I am. . . where I am.


Whatever work you do, whether in your family, at home, or in the office, I trust my words will encourage you to embrace this truth:


Your work has value, but your worth is not in your work. Share on X


Do you need to back up and read that statement aloud to yourself? Go ahead, I’m repeating it too.


Your Worth is in Who You Are Not What You Do


We all need reminders that God is at work in whatever is happening in our lives. We are never working alone. Our worth is in who we are, not what we do.


And just maybe, this post will inspire you to slow down to receive the gifts God has for you in the work you accomplish today.


Slow down to remember that your identity is in Christ, not in your profession or roles.


You are enough and your worth cannot be measured by your work.


Is Fear of Failing Impacting Your Pace or Your Work?


If some is good, more is better, or so says the world.


I’d love to say I don’t let this old lie influence me anymore, but I still trip over this one at times. More often than I’d like.


On the outside, the do-more mentality glitters with good things like goals, new ideas, determination, and productivity. We all need a healthy level of focus, motivation, and effort to complete the work we are called to accomplish. But when God’s calling twists into something to prove, our heart motivation needs attention.


Insecurity and fear getting lost in the crowd simmered beneath my good intentions and worthy goals. I still have to make the effort to silence the “not enough” voice in my head because perfectionism doesn’t go quietly.


Last year God enabled me to accomplish many beautiful things amid a busy pace. There were so many blessings, great experiences, and wins–it was a great year on many levels!


Busy with an ambitious travel schedule of conferences and speaking events, I was rarely home for more than three weeks at a time. I also juggled a part-time job, family commitments, writing, editing, ministry work, and took a counseling class.


Consistency in many areas of life was hard to sustain in a cycle preparation and catch up. Do you find your pace hard to sustain as well? When we succumb to finding our worth in our work, our schedule can outpace our energy.

Shrugging our shoulders, we tell ourselves that margin is a luxury rather than a necessity.

Desktop flat lay.

With expansion comes more responsibility that can stir up old insecurities.


Along with the joy and excitement of growing in our work, there are many transitions and challenges when God expands our territory. We run hard and fast, dashing from one meeting to the next as the tasks pile high.


If this sounds like your life, hang onto the truth that your worth is not in your work. This is an often-overlooked aspect of discipleship—guarding our hearts to truly live out of our identity in Christ. 



8 Ways to Stop Seeking Your Worth from Your Work

One of the reasons I wanted to update this post is to share more truths the Holy Spirit has taught me over time on this important topic.  God works to restore harmony to our lives when our work, purpose, and source of identity are out of alignment. He desires that we have a secure identity in Christ that empowers us to live and work in freedom from the pressure of performance.


Each of these points stem from verses and meditations over time. Reviewing my journals allows me to notice how God speaks to the vulnerabilities of our hearts with the transforming power of his love.


I hope you will find these words as meaningful and helpful as I have.

  1. Prioritize your identity in Christ. What is true of you spiritually is what is most true about you. Continually come back to what is true of you as a child of God.
    • Recognize that your spiritual identity is the most fundamental truth about you.
    • Engage in daily meditation or affirmations focusing on your identity in Christ to live free from the temptation to derive worth from your achievements.


  1. Remember it is God’s work, not ours. Invite God into the process as you focus on partnering with Christ. This can help us remember that both the work and the outcomes are in God’s hands.
  • Involve God in your daily activities, acknowledging that both the efforts and the results are under His control.
  • Commit to give your best and trust God with the outcomes, reinforcing that your value does not hinge on success.


  1. Embrace our limits as a gift. Practicing Sabbath and soul rest helps us hold our work with open hands. We trust God with our unfinished work as we set aside weekly time to rest and worship. A few years ago God impressed on me the importance of following his example in the creation account in Genesis. Not only to practice Sabbath-an act of worshipful trust. 


  1. Set boundaries with your work. At creation God created specific parts of a larger whole. At the end of each day, he acknowledges the completion of the day’s work, calling it good.
  • Taking time to thank God and enjoy the work we have accomplished during the day can help us maintain a sense of gratitude.
  • Daily gratitude for the work we have completed keeps our focus on God. Particularly for teachers, writers, pastors and those who work with people, there is rarely a set end to specific tasks, but ongoing effort, expectation, and demands on time, energy, and expertise.
  • Also, this is an issue for those who work from home. Practicing boundaries for the end of the workday and being grateful for what has been accomplished can help us enjoy sustainable work.


  1. Build with what God provides. Our culture constantly elevates those with more reach, success, and influence, often creating standards and algorithms that keep us continually hustling to keep up with the latest trend.Pay attention to the blessings and opportunities God has already provided.
  • Before striving for more or moving on to the next new shiny thing, practice the habit of fully engaging with what God has already given.
  • Practice contentment, which is not complacency, but an act of surrender and gratitude, trusting God in the process.


  1. Recognize the temptation to serve our own purpose. Understand the temptation to rely on oneself rather than partnering with God in our endeavors.
  • Our role is to receive and respond to the work God is doing, honoring Him with our effort but not drawing life and worth from the results.
  • When success starts defining us, calling morphs into ambition.
  • How do we combat this? By inviting God into every part of our workday, consciously aligning our actions with His purpose.


  1. Identify and release fear of failure. Fear of failure, or insignificance, can be overt or covert. It can blare in your face or sneak in under the radar of your awareness.

Flat lay photo includes a woman's hands typing on laptop and other desk items

8. Cultivate the habit of putting your confidence in God rather than self. Remember your work is part of God’s calling and purpose in your life. Avoid letting outcomes determine your hope and confidence. Regularly affirm your trust in God’s provision and sovereignty, especially in challenging times

Living by the Spirit in all of life will impact how we work. Focusing on keeping in step with the Spirit includes letting him set the pace and direction. This becomes a place of freedom as I assess my motivations and my work.


Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. —Galatians 5:25 NIV


Knowing God cares about the struggles I face reminds me to entrust my fears and insecurities to him. Be encouraged with a soul note Father shared with me in a quiet time as I prayed about this persistent struggle of seeking my worth in my work. 


You are deeply loved and secure in me. I love you for who you are. Your work is one part of your life. When you seek your worth in your work, you will starve your soul. Don’t confuse the outcomes you see today with your value. Today isn’t the end of the story. Seek me each day with an open heart and open hands so your soul can let go of the idol of performance. Follow my lead and keep in step with me. Slow down to receive my love and peace. Because of my love, it is well with your soul.


Trust God with your work and your worth.

Ask God to help you reach the potential he has placed in you. Never underestimate what the power of the Holy Spirit can do in your life and through your work. Seek to keep in step with God, remembering work is part of the journey, but not the destination. Our purpose is never the outcome of our work. Work is an important part of life, but it is not the purpose of life. Keeping work in a right perspective guards our heart drawing self-worth from our work.

 I wrote about the holy habit of entrusting our work to God in the last chapter of my book, Holy in the Moment. If this topic resonates with you, you will benefit from the many truths, tips, and stories to help you live fully in your identity in Christ. Purchase your copy today and don’t miss the free printable journal and discussion guide for the book. 

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