Thursday, May 14, 2009

Struggle with Vocation

            In some ways, these have been the best months of my life. Devoting myself to this little baby, growing in my capacity to love, caring for another while expecting nothing in return. All these things have deeply influenced me to become a better man.
            And yet, I still feel this deep yearning, the one I’ve felt for much of my life, that I want more. I want to achieve great things, accomplish good works, succeed in my vocation. Some may say, “But raising a family is a vocation!” I know for Michelle, that’s all she’s got right now. But for me I say, “Yes, but…”
            The word “vocation” comes from the Latin, and means literally “calling.” It’s far more than a profession or a job, it’s about a life’s calling. What are we, as individuals, called to do specifically in our lives. This does include a job and raising a family, but I think the vocational question runs even deeper than these. It touches on the spiritual and the significant. What is my purpose? What is the vision for my life?
            I sometimes feel frustrated, being pinned down with this child. I recognize that raising a family is a part of the way I’m wired, but I also want to get out there and take on the world, and having a family drastically limits that. I mean, look at how much I stay at home each evening nowadays! I used to go out a lot, or throw parties more, anyway. Now, it’s work during the day, stay home at night. End of story. End of me!
            No, no, that’s not true, either. I am blessed to be doing this, but it is indeed a struggle. Is it a balance? I don’t know. I can try to balance the important things in life, but it seems like there’s a complete imbalance right now; the baby took over nearly everything, so how on earth can I actually balance all the rest of what used to be my life into those tiny moments of free time, especially when I’m oftentimes exhausted?!
            It’s not like I’m putting my life on hold because of this baby, but it certainly feels sometimes like I won’t have much opportunity outside of this. I wonder if it’s going to be the kind of experience where I throw myself so fully into a different way of living that it radically changes me? Will I lose who I was before? Or will it simply augment that? Will I still accomplish things? I suppose so, but I’m sure it will be at a different pace and probably even different kinds of things.
            Well, whatever the future holds, I realize that dwelling in an unreality of what is to come isn’t helpful for the present. I’ve got to get back to things here and now, get rooted in this moment, because I don’t know what the future will hold and all I’ve really got is the here and now. So, instead of worrying, I hope I can have the strength to enjoy what’s going on, and maybe not lose sight of some of this bigger dreams I’ve had for my life. Who knows, maybe one day it’ll all make sense?

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