For each of us there comes a time when life jumps up and smacks us in the face, demanding that we take inventory of who we are, where we are in life, and what we are doing with ourselves. For most of us that little reality check will usually remind us of dreams we had when we were young about who we would become and what we would accomplish by a certain age.
Perhaps this story will ring a familiar bell. A man died and went to heaven and when he was standing before God, he started apologizing for all that he was not. He was sorry he had not been more like Billy Graham. God stopped him and said, “I created Billy Graham to be Billy Graham and called him to be the same. I created and called you to be you.”
The problem is that many of us have well meaning adults, friends, sweethearts, or coaches in our young lives that try to call us or push down a path that God is not calling us to follow. As a teen, everyone thought I would be a missionary, marry a preacher, become a preacher or a country gospel singer. Their intentions were good, but they were trying to pick out a box to fit me in because of my love for God and my passion for the gospel.
Unless God calls us in a particular direction and we answer, we will be miserable trying to live up to someone else’s expectations. I spent thirty years in a public school classroom and loved it. My students were my own little congregation and the halls of the school my mission field in a sense. I was there to teach, to love, and to let Christ shine through me in the way I behaved and the way I treated those young people and my colleagues. I was very happy doing what I believe God had called me to do during that season.
But seasons change and callings change. I anticipate God calling me in a new direction during the next season of my life. It is both exciting and scary. I don’t want to miss it. I want to be the woman God created me to be. I want to accomplish all the things that God has called me to do. When I stand before God in heaven, I want to have been the best Judy – the best Queen of Ordinary that I could possibly be. And regardless of what anyone else thinks – that’s all that God requires of me.
To those who may feel like they have missed their calling, blown their opportunities in the younger days of their lives, or completely lost their way and don’t know what God wants them to do right now – just remember that God is the redeemer of broken things. It is impossible to go back and change the past. But God still has a plan for each one of us and it starts TODAY. His plan is to prosper us, give us hope, and purpose. He still calls us. He still redeems us. He still has an adventure ahead for every life, every one who belongs to Him. Be yourself and surrender that self to God’s hands. He will take care of the details.