What I Want to be When I Grow Up

What I Want to be When I Grow Up March 14, 2006
Vocation does not come from willfulness. It comes from listening. I must listen to my life and try to understand what it is truly about . . . or my life will never represent anything real in the world, no matter how earnest my intentions.
Parker J. Palmer


I read this quote by Parker Palmer this week and it got me to thinking. Recent challenges at church have invited me again to think hard about my calling and try to evaluate, once again, if I am spending my life following God’s call. In other words, when I have a few moments to spare (hahahahaha) I’ve been asking myself again what I am meant to do with my life, if I’m doing it and, if so, if I am doing it “right”.

(How’s that for leisure activity? This is my Achilles heel, you know . . . my pervasive attempt to make sure I am doing everything totally and completely correctly.)

And no matter how hard I try to figure it all out, it seems increasingly that discovering and living vocation is more of a mystery and less of a science.

Life is a process of asking: “Who am I and where does my life fit into God’s great big picture?” Living into the answer is the process of discovering vocation. It can’t be quantified or delineated; it must be felt with conviction and lived with courage.

Do you remember when you were little and everyone asked you what you wanted to be when you grew up? The pressure was already there to know exactly.

Did you ever think, for one minute, that you’d be asking the same question for the rest of your life?

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  • Will

    Hi Amy

    I did. I don’t know if it is easy?? I some what know what I was going to be around six year of age. But didn’t really know which of the two building one downtown or in Virginia. I’m going to work at. NO I’m not making it up. For being in a family that work for the government.

    Some who I grew up to fast… Maybe…

    But Amy I know it not my call or say what other. But I know you did what he what’d you to do.

    Someone said it not the pastor or the congregation… But it all in one to make a church. But it is you… You’re the one how set the tone of the church… You bring life… You have a special way to tell the living word to the congregation… With what you side in the news letter… All this, even without me there. Yes the world turn, the flower grows, and the coffee will keep on dripping at Starbuck with out you. But their only one of you and maybe I might be wrong. But you help bright a lot of us together for a greater purpose in where owner in a small pace of a greater hole of the picture. Right now I can tell what the picture is… “It’s a work in progress and the picture getting big, big every time we go to church”… But that a good thing…

    But I ask myself the same question. But not know for shore… But I keep on track and praying on what path I lead is the right one. I hope what I do with my life a small part of a greather whole. That knowing what I do to make the father proud me.

    I hope you understand what I trying to say. And keep up the good work. I don’t care what JIM says about you. “hahahahahaha”

    You’re Friend
    Will

  • A. Lin

    I’ve been thinking a lot about my calling, too. I read Is it I, Lord?, a book about being called to preach, just today. Throughout my life I have received assurances that I will never be satisfied with my life until I am a pastor. That said, I have yet to be called. It is painful and frustrating to be rejected.

    You know I blogged about being a SAHM. I am beginning to see my role as a SAHM as a form of idolatry. It is easy to just take care of the kids and not have to think about actively finding a ministry position. With my focus on my kids though, I know that my life is not focused on God. No wonder I despise my role as a SAHM.

    I know that whatever path God takes you on, I can see his presence in your writing. I know that it is good to reflect and pray about one’s calling. I hope that this time brings you the peace you are seeking.

  • LutheranChik

    I think one of the constituent parts of my midlife crisis;-) was realizing that I would be asking this question for the rest of my life.

  • Caroline Armijo

    As we discussed last week, my vocation is something that I am always thinking about. I have been thinking about since I was a little girl. And I am sure that I will continue to struggle thinking about it. Despite all of the books that I have read, I never thought of asking God to tell me who I am. It seems like something so obvious. I am really excited about the Lenten Group and feel like it is helping me to finally listen to the answers to some of my life-long questions. I can’t guarantee that I am won’t still strugggle with “What do I do with my life?” But it is nice to at least have a little break from these questions and the abilitiy to move forward with attempting to create my vocation.