When I went into teaching, it was an invitation and a challenge. But a calling? Searching for what I would do with my life, or my calling, started when I went to college and everyone asked, “What’s your major?”, or, “What are you going to do when you graduate?”. Four and a half years later ended me up with a college degree in Psychology, student loans, and working my first real job that had nothing to do with my degree.
“The more specific you are in your artistry, the more universal it becomes.”Chadwick Bronson
Chadwick’s statement is humbling.
Callings are part of our culture; it’s the work we do until we no longer do it anymore. It’s part of a system; a part of life, but not all of it. When teachers stop teaching in the summer, do they stop existing? No. Therefore, calling can be seen as the destination, not the vehicle that gets us there. The vehicle may be a listening ear to the student who had a bad day, the encouragement for the student who is drowning in assignments and projects, or the pusher for the coworker who is unmotivated. Call it what you will, but it is these skills, talents, and gifts which can be used as a vehicle no matter where our calling leads.
After I became a Christian, I figured God would tell me exactly what He wanted me to do with my life. I was looking for an earpiece like Aaron Rodgers wears when he needs to hear from his coach about the next play. I wanted an earpiece to hear from God about the next play of my life. The truth is, He does speak!
God talks with us in our own language (Acts 2:8). Even if you dont say anything! God hears you. Like Bumblebee in the movie Transformers who could only talk through radio stations, God can reach us through the ways in which we hear the best. The Bible is the most accurate way because men who were inspired by the Holy Spirit wrote those words. But there’s nothing as specific as, “You will take classes to teach students,” or, “You will marry this person when you turn 27.” Not exactly. God speaks to us though. He truly desires to communicate with you because He loves you. And if you haven’t talked to him in awhile, it’s not too late. He misses you.
Although I didn’t grow up in a Christian home, a Bible was stuffed away on a bookshelf at my Mom’s house. One time, I opened it, and I thought the power of God, if there was one, would come upon me. Instead, I felt like I was reading mumbo jumbo. Why is this so dry? I knew it was an important book, but I would go another 5-6 years, when I gave my life to Jesus, until I understood why the words were so dry.
It was like new lenses in my glasses, and I could see much better. The same Bible that was so dry and boring was now alive and meaningful! But belief in Jesus does not automatically download all things one needs to know, no matter how many times you read through a Bible. God did not make Apps, but beautiful human beings.
The story in the Bible didn’t change. God didn’t change. In fact, God never changes – He’s always been and always will be the same (Isaiah 40:8). But my heart changed, and I had hope. My entire being and soul was deflated, and inviting God into my life felt like all the burdens and pains were lifted up from my shoulders; like watching helium-filled balloons fly up to the sky. I digress. Did I ever find my calling? Yes, teaching. But now? How can I use the gifts, skills, and talents both individually and as a family in Madison? Whether I’m 34 or 84 years old, my hope is to become engaged and participate in what God is already doing through me.