On Vocation/Calling/What am I going to do when I grow up?

Time to look into the mirror.

I have thought a lot about the idea of calling and vocation lately.  Working with young people I find myself saying.. you don’t need to have it all figured out.  I really wanted a 5 year plan.  I have always wanted a 5 year plan.  I don’t think God has ever let me have one.

PLU taught me that vocation was the spot where your great passion met the world’s great need (thanks Wild Hope).  I learned working at Puyallup Foursquare that ministry was who I was, not what I did.  Recently I learned from Pastor Frank Damazio (City Bible Church) that ministry was a calling and that the practical of what I did was the current function.

Not everyone feels like they are called (but they are) or that they have to have a vocation (but they can).  I have always loved working but I wanted to do something I loved.

When I was in third grade I wanted to be a fashion designer and a doctor.  I think somewhere deep down, I knew that money could be shaky in the arts.  In 6th grade I still wanted to be a doctor but there was a part of me that really wanted to work at MTV.  I identified doctor as a smart person vocation.. and I liked being smart.  I identified MTV as a place of arts and a place I could wear jeans to work.

In high school I was drawn to many things.  Music business, drama, writing, graphic design, photography.  I was also drawn to helping people and figuring things out.  I worked at a real estate office as a receptionist and I taught clarinet lessons. I also wanted to be a smart person.

In college I freaked out and on my third try I picked Music Education.  I really enjoyed it.  Everything about it.  What I probably learned most in my music education classes was that I was a leader and I learned how to be a better leader. I also started serving in church on the worship team and with the youth ministry.  At one point I felt what I now know was God pointing me towards ministry.

I taught very briefly after college and quickly learned that I like working with young people and I hated bell schedules.  I loved mentoring and couldn’t stand grading periods! I didn’t know I was a free spirit – or had problems with authority… who knows.

After that I worked as an admission counselor and finally landed at Puyallup Foursquare working with the Executive Pastor and eventually the creative pastor (apologize for the run on sentence).  I thought everything had let to that.  I got to use all the things I had learned and loved it.  I waited a few years and then finally got my district pastoral license in the Foursquare Denomination (tell that to 3rd grade me).

When we moved to Camas, I came back to an old passion.. graphics, art and writing.  Armed with a hand me down computer and an old copy of Adobe Illustrator.. I learned a lot.. and then I learned some more.  Somehow I ended up being the Communications Director at Grace Church.  I’ve taught myself quite a bit and learned a lot from friends and other churches/businesses.  I also get to pastor people – my favorites being those 6th grade – college.  I love the local church and what it is capable of doing for the community and world (like giving away in over $27,000 in assistance in a year among other things).

The coolest part is that I haven’t arrived.  I can look back and see the tapestry of my calling.  I look at the areas God has placed me and it is pretty amazing.  I never thought making 700 calls to prospective students would be a layer in that but it is (finding something to talk about with an angry 8th grade girl can be hard sometimes!).

I am convinced that no matter where you are in life… there is still more to be done.   We are on a journey.  **Edit** so when you are frustrated and angry at where you at… remember.. there is more **  It is okay that I don’t know what 5 years from now looks like.  I’m on the journey to what I will be when I grow up.

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Word for the Year, update

So now is about the time of the year that I look at my goals. It has been an interesting year with some very private ups and downs. Normally I am pretty open about everything but in this season, I have felt a call to hold my cards close to my chest while still being my awesomely flawed, funtastically imperfect and authentic self. So not everything is perfect but God is still awesomely perfect and has a purpose and plan for me. Yep me. And you!

Some of my goals are going swimmingly and some are still evolving. I have started running again and hope to run a 10k in July.. but I will be satisfied with a 5k. I have been more intentional about setting short term goals and meeting them. Take that fun patio table!

I want to be reading more, studying more, mentoring more and hanging out with friends more. Lots of mores. I feel like my word had to do with discipline and time. It is a good thing I am in progress!

March… running the race

March is amazing! I have been all over and am loving my victory lap for my 20s. Tonight I am winding down from the excitement and adrenaline of the UG conference. There is nothing more exciting to me right now than looking around me and seeing over 1000 young people praising Jesus.

Tonight I was left thinking a lot about myself and the life I live. What am I daily doing to reach Camas? My neighbors? More than young people? Where is the fire? Yikes. Love it AND I am excited to challenge myself to walk it out.

But as I run this month… here is a quick recap

1) Started my victory lap with a trip to Palm Desert, CA. Why do I live in the Northwest… oh yea, calling. Spent a few quick days with a bestie.. Shannon and got some much needed SUN!

2) Endured the gamble and thrill of flying standby.

3) Learned that flight attendants mean business. I wish more parents where that way with their kids on a flight. That means your child over two cannot sit in your lap and shouldn’t scream bloody murder for 20 minutes over wearing a seatbelt. Bravo to the flight attendants that held their ground.

4) Prayer is amazing. Gets you through turbulence… literal and figurative.

5) Returned to the cold wasteland of PDX. Just kidding. I was glad to be home even if my lovey was sick.

6) Started a new book and “diet” if you will called Cinch! Quit the diet coke and most artificial flavoring aside from the treat of occasional skinny caramel machiatto. Down to 1 caffeinated beverage a day. Taking vitamins. Serious stuff.

7) The Langs are finishing up our taxes and praying about a new to us car. I know what I want.. and can’t afford… but it doesn’t hurt to ask.

8) Now I am winding down for bed. Tomorrow is Day 2 of the UG Conference. Please join with us in prayer for our students, the speakers and safety for driving in Puyallup. I am not joking about that part.