I was out getting lunch at a restaurant with my wife the other day. As we parked the car I saw this seemly lost pair of sneakers on the parking lot. It brought to mind numerous students that I’ve listened to who are looking for some direction about their future.
“I am not really sure.” “Oh, I am trying to figure that out.” “Someday I will figure it out.” “I’m just trying to have fun and feel my way though to where I suppose to be.” “Help!” These are all comments I’ve heard from high school students, college students and other young adults. Many times these statements flow from a perspective that believes there’s one right answer as to why I am here and what I should be doing with my life. In the midst of our doubts, questioning and fears we can feel like the picture attached: either moving in different directions or worse, like I’ve lost myself or my direction along the way.
A sense of “calling,” purpose,” or vocation is not a simple, one step process for most of us. All through life we might find ourselves asking, “why am I here, now?” “What has God brought me to this place in my life for?” “What is my purpose?” I know an 87 year old woman who said recently, “Not sure why God has me here, but he must have a purpose for me.” It seems that the search and the questions do not fade away.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT) says,
Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.
Though there are many practical tools and helps to aid us in exploration of our sense of calling, this proverb from God’s word reminds us that the starting point is trusting God, seeking him and his will, and looking to him for direction. God desires that we join in his purposes in the world and he will give us direction for our lives as we seek him.