Monday, August 4, 2008

For Hope and a Future

Jeremiah 29:11 “I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.”

My entire life, no matter where I have been, I have never felt as if I truly fit in. In middle school and high school I had a great time, had lots of friends, and was involved in many things, but most of the time I was always waiting for the next thing. Sometimes I also felt I was trying to be something I wasn’t.

In college I had many friends and was involved in many things, but I never felt that I 100% fit in with any one group or activity. I didn’t quite fit in at Carlson. There was something just a smidge off with Campus Crusade for Christ. I definitely did not feel like I fit in with City Celebration. The closest I ever got was freshman year in Middlebrook. I was blessed to have an amazing first year of college, but I think it was an impossibly high yardstick for the rest of my university days.

Cut to a year out of university, and I am in Hungary. I certainly had some struggles, but I ended my time in Sopron feeling all the more blessed for the experience.

When I returned from Hungary, I had no clue what I wanted to do. I spent the next six months deciding that I wanted to move back to Minneapolis. I prayed many a prayer asking God to direct my life and help me get back to the Twin Cities I loved so much.

Does anyone else see the conditional in that statement? I wanted God to take control and let His will be done in my life, but only if that will matched with mine.

Instead I moved to Milwaukee. Not particularly excited to move to this minitropolis, I became pleasantly surprised at what I found.

I found a job I loved. I found a professional community that not only embraced me, but also gave me the opportunity to be a leader. This same community, and the connections I found within it, encouraged me to take the next step toward graduate school.

Basically, I am starting to feel that I’ve found my place and direction in life. That’s not to say I won’t someday move on, or my life won’t dramatically change again, but I feel at home here. I love where I live. I love what I do. I love where my career path is going. I love the close group of friends and colleagues I have here. Most of all, I love the life I’ve been blessed with here, and it amazes me.

What I’ve come to realize is that, what I want may be great, but what God has planned for me is more amazing than I can ever imagine. I did not want to come to Milwaukee, but it’s better here than it would have been for me in Minneapolis. The opportunities and blessings I’ve been given in the past two years have seemed endless.

Now, instead of praying for God to direct any specific area of my life, I ask him to bless me abundantly. And He has.

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