In college, I had an existential crisis. It’s easy to say now, but it really rocked me for a few months. I had chosen what I knew was a safe career path, and I knew I would be making great money. Fall semester of my senior (fourth) year, I was sitting in my Tuesday 2PM class and was struck by the thought,
“You’ll never be happy doing this the rest of your life.”
It came out of absolutely nowhere. I immediately pushed that out of my head, instead going with the thought process, “Well, I can’t be happy every day of my life, right? But if I’m stable and making good money, isn’t it worth it?”
Short answer- NO.
Looking back on it now, I can see God’s hand in the days, months, and year to follow. I made the extremely hard (but correct) decision, much to my dad’s dismay, to add one more year to my time in college, become a Super Senior, and graduate with a degree with no real guarantee that I would amount to anything in terms of society standards.
Looking back on it now, I truly can’t even comprehend how I actually did it. I am one that is ALL for stability and consistency, but I threw that out the window for a year and a subsequent career that was all up in the air. But they say that time cultivates wisdom, and it’s in that time since that I realized my life could have only happened this way. How am I so sure? In short,
I wasn’t listening to my passion in life, which diminished my potential, and distracted my pursuit.
Without these three things working in harmony, complacency erupts and standards are lowered. Even though I wasn’t a follower of Jesus back then, he wasn’t going to let me make a mistake that could diminish the work I could do for him in my life.
Inspiration in Unlikely Places
About a month ago I woke up in the morning and noticed my journal was open on my shelf. I looked at it, and realized that at some point in the night I had written,
Passion from God
Potential in God
Pursuit of God
First thought- Wow, subconscious Sam has got some things she’s thinking about.
Second thought- Maybe conscious Sam should work through what that means.
After some thought, I connected it back to my job/career/life change back in college. My passion wasn’t being pursued, which diminished my potential, and distracted my pursuit. But in all honesty, I hadn’t connected that back to God until this particular day.
Passion + Potential + Pursuit = A Life Well Lived
I started following Jesus intentionally in that fifth year of college, August 2015. And it’s been in the past two years that I’ve slowly but surely realized that my passion in life is deeply rooted in the unique heart and soul that was knitted together by God himself as He was making me. No mistakes, no outtakes, just who I am meant to be. I’ve heard it said before that the two most important days of our lives is the day we are born and the day we find out why, and while I do agree that those are extremely important, I’d like to propose that the day that we actually begin to live out our “why” is just as important as the day we figure out what it is.
For me, my “why” is a recent realization. My soul is set on fire the most in two instances- 1) when I can encourage people to live out their passions, and 2) when I can help facilitate the emergence of a story, whether that be in writing or another avenue. Reason number 2 is why I’ve become a writer in my career path- all types of writing excite me, and any opportunity of pen to paper is taken and capitalized on.
But had I not taken the mental inventory and centered my passion with my potential and pursuit, my heart might not be as fulfilled right now as it currently is.
We’ve got to use our passion from God
to ignite our potential in God,
in our life-long pursuit of God.
And it’s not a one-and-done situation, either- it’s a calculated decision every single day to live out the life God has called us to live. It’s hard, more challenging than living a life without Him. But the pain + trials + tragedies + hard times are so worth it. His dreams and aspirations for us are so much higher than ours, it’s almost impossible to imagine.
When God is realized in our passions and we let Him unlock our potentials, our pursuit of Him in and through our lives is so much sweeter, and grows exponentially with joy every single day. When I’m able to leave a situation with more joy than it began with, that is living life well.
There’s no rhyme or reason to the formula of a life well lived. It is different for every single person – we all live and love differently. But I have found that a life rooted in a God greater than all is the best way to figure out what to live, and that Jesus is the best mirror in figuring out how to live it.
“Take my heart
Take my soul
Take my mind and I will
Give my thoughts
Give my all
Give my life to follow You Take my hands
Take my breath
Take my dreams and I will
Lift my eyes
Lift my faith
Lift my voice and worship You.”
-“Life” by Hillsong United
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