Lately I seem to have been swarmed with questions of “what do you want to do with your life?,” “what are you doing this fall?,” “do you think you will come back?,” and then the “what do you feel called to?.” As if I had written down the answers on notecards, memorized them, and practiced them in front of the mirror, I recite my plans for my future and all my “safe answers.”
God has really given me a heart for kids with special needs and other disabilities and for those living in poverty in other countries. I plan to get my bachelor of science in psychology and then go to graduate school to get a masters degree in occupational therapy. I want to work with kids with special needs. This fall, I will go back to Baylor to continue my studies there and continue pursuing my education. I don’t know yet if or when I will come back to Gabriel House. I love it here and love the kids. If it is the Lord’s will, I will be back again soon, but I don’t know what else this year holds. I definitely feel called to missions and to working with kids with special needs though.
If you know me, then you know this. And if you have asked me these questions then you have probably heard these answers verbatim. Its not that any of this is untrue, but in the last couple of weeks and days, God has been bringing me to realize that I have erred in giving such answers. They are regurgitations without thought. I have changed, yet I have not taken the time to rethink through big questions (yes dad, I am still going to Baylor this fall, and no I’m not changing my major again) or possibly even truly put thought into them in the first place.
Such answers are safe—few to argue with. However, I find that I need to be asking myself who I want to follow and who I will choose to follow. If it is indeed Jesus Christ then, as I see now, as was true for Paul, and as is true for so many others, answers to such questions aren’t necessarily “safe.” I feel as if I am supposed to know, but I find strength in entrusting them to an all powerful God who already has plans for me and for all those with whom I will interact.
So, I guess I will try again: I want to offer my life as a living sacrifice to God our Father that I might be used to love on and care for the least of these—those who are unwanted and discarded and unable to care for themselves wherever that leads me and whatever that means for me for this life is not my own.
However, as I take time to think about what I am really called to, God reminds me first of all that it is the same as everyone else. Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:37-39 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19
And in words it seems simple. Love God. Love others. Go and make disciples. Baptize. Teach obedience. But when I start asking God how he wants me to do these things—when I start seeking His specific calling within these words, I find it a mess of faith. For I have realized that seeking His specific calling is not something that is evaluated when jobs end, or when a new opportunity arises. It cannot be for me something that I am only doing yearly, monthly, or even weekly, but rather every day.
I have found lately that though I am called here—to Gabriel House and to the children—it has become easier to get caught in a worker mentality then that of loving on and helping the children. So I must step back for a moment and evaluate: What specifically am I called to right now? Am I obeying? How so? And Daily I must approach our Father for mercy and grace—and that I would not lose sight of what He has called me to nor miss what He may call me to today.
Abba, Father, Daddy, lead me. Guide me. What do you what me to do? Help me to love you more and to love those around me more whatever that takes and whatever that means on my part. Give me wisdom and insight—reveal your will to me in your timing that I may follow you and your plan.