When I was 24, I was in a job that was not a great fit for me. Not terrible, but not great, and the “not great” part was all I focused on.
I was very anxious about my job and very restless for the next thing. I wanted to find out exactly what my calling was and do only that. I thought if I found the job that was my calling, I would love it and jump out of bed every morning, even on Mondays.
I’ve felt this way for most of my twenties.
Even when I got a new job at age 24 that was a much better fit for me and gave me more joy, I prayed God would show me exactly what He wanted me to do and give me the courage to do it.
A few months ago I began reading a book called The Call by Os Guinness. I loved the title and decided by the time I finished it, I would have a clear picture of God’s will for my life.
This was going to be great.
Then, I read this paragraph.
And it’s basically all I’m thinking about right now:
“…it is easy to become spoiled if we concentrate on the core of our giftedness—as if the universe existed only to fulfill our gifts….We live in a fallen world and the core of our gifts may not be fulfilled in our lives on earth. If there had been no Fall, all our work would have naturally and fully expressed who we are and exercised the gifts we have been given. But after the Fall, that is not so.”
When I first read that part of the book, I fought it. No, I thought, I will “arrive” one day. I will discover my perfect calling.
It’s here, and I’m going to find it.
But what if it’s not?
What if this really is a fallen world in which things fell, and now they are broken? This is what was promised to us after all: “In the world you will have tribulation,” Jesus said (John 16:33).
How quickly I forget that. How quickly I get discouraged and wonder why I don’t feel content or why work is so hard sometimes. Maybe it’s because it’s supposed to be. Maybe it’s to remind us that things are broken here.
And the reminder of brokenness carries over into all areas of our lives. We scramble for perfection, peace, clarity and happiness, but are they here? Sometimes yes, but also sometimes no.
And they’re not meant to be.
When I see it this way, the breaking of things is a promise for the whole that is coming. “But take heart; I have overcome the world,” says the rest of John 16:33. And though this promise does not lessen the longing, it does deepen the hope.