Note: This is adapted from a blog post I wrote several years back, but seems pertinent as I think about vocation in my new context.
When I grow up I’m going to be a teacher. An astronaut. A baseball player. The list goes on of the words that I heard as a child growing up. I recall hearing one of my fellow teammates ask that question of a young child in Zimbabwe. An orphan. She couldn’t answer the question because the reality was she probably wasn’t going to grow up. A majority of the orphans where we were had HIV/AIDS. And even if she did grow up she really had no choice of what she was going to be.
It makes me wonder if we are asking the wrong question.
For years I talked about what I wanted to be when I grew up. Then one day I looked in the mirror and realized that I had grown up. I’m not sure when it happened. When I packed up my Honda Accord and headed off to college. On my 18th birthday near the end of my freshmen year. When I drove cross country to start grad school in Boston. As I spoke to my classmates at Baccalaureate. As I took my first real job far from home. I don’t know. All I know is that I grew up.
And I needed to stop asking what I’m going to be, but rather who I am going to be. Not tomorrow or 20 years from now, but right now, every day. Who am I made to be? Who am I going to be?
I’m bought with a price. A child made in the image of the creator. A sinner saved by grace. I’m called to be peacemaker. A grace giver. A friend to the friendless. A light in the darkness. A lover of all.
And these callings of who I’m supposed to be remain regardless of what it is I’m doing. Being who I’m supposed to be is not something that requires a certain job. I can’t wait until tomorrow to determine whom He has called to be. Because it’s here- every day- that I must come to the place of determining that I will embrace not only what I’m called to be, but also who I’m called to be.
*In case you’re wondering those adorable children are my sister and me. I’m pretty sure that was the dirtiest I ever got as a kid.