Friday, March 27, 2009

Who am I, and where am I going, and am I being redundant?

I saw a doctor in my late high school and early college days; I guess he was all right medically, but in general he was a bit pessimistic. When I told him I was majoring in history he said, "Ah, looking for a career at Baskin-Robbins scooping ice cream!" We laughed at the time, but it was true--with all the time I spent analyzing the past, I hadn't the foggiest idea of what direction I'd take in the future. Even today, my life is peppered with unanswered what-are-you-going-to-do queries. But lately, I don't think I care. At least, I've been learning that who you're becoming trumps what you're going to do. The reminders just keep popping up. I particularly like the old motto that Richard J. Foster cites (in Latin no less): actio sequitur esse, "action follows essence." In other words, take care of who you are, and that will flow from there. I see it in the Word, too. Psalm 25:12 is awkwardly phrased, yet to the point when it says, "Who is the man who fears the Lord? Him will he instruct in the way that he should choose." Additional verses, sermons, conversations, and experiences, they all corroborate the same idea, and I suspect that it really is this "simple." I'm not saying that it's quick or easy--in fact, it hopelessly complicates matters for task-oriented individuals such as myself--but I'm convinced that the key to my future endeavors, and even to "finding God's will for my life" (as if it were lost), lies not in external factors as much as in my own identity, an identity that must begin and end in Christ.

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