What do you want to do with that degree?
Is this [job] what you were hoping to do as a career?
How long are you planning to stay?
The questions we ask people about life, whether it be careers, marriage, children, hobbies, etc… often are the wrong questions to ask. During day one of orientation for my Master’s degree at Dallas Theological Seminary I was asked numerous times, “What degree program are you in?” closely followed by the question, “Oh, great, so what do you hope to do with that?” Or, “What kind of ministry are you planning to serve in after you finish?”
So many of our questions are leading questions. We intend to lead people to a specific type of answer. An answer that belongs in a neatly organized box. And not only that, but these questions do not focus on the heart of who the person we are conversing with, rather, we are forcing people to answer in a particular way so that we can categorize them.
Since my move here to Seoul, I have been asked too many times, “Oh, so is this job what you were wanting to do when you attended seminary?”
Um, no. It isn’t. Wasn’t.
I had no clue I would be here.
I have no clue how long I will be here.
I have no clue where I will go next.
God only knows.
And that’s the thing about all our grand plans: they aren’t ours. We can plan all day until our faces are blue and our fingers are bleeding with callouses: we cannot know the future.
Proverbs rightly reminds us: “A person plans his course, but the Lord directs his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9, NET)
it seems like the same conversation happens
again and again
wait, wait, wait
okay. i’ll wait again
no one to call mine
not that i’m ready for that
but it could be nice
it could be time
somehow you always seem to see me
see me for who i actually am
the good and not so good
the grand and not so grand
but how can i know?
how could i possibly decide?
residing in between fear and regret
this is the way, walk in it
that’s all i want to hear
to make a decision without question
to take a step without wondering
somehow we figure out how to survive
between the tension of believing
and trusting with faith
i think i might need you, too
but only time will tell
only after letting my heart loose
will i know exactly where it lies
waiting is my joy,
my curse, my friend
alone is where i will lay and stay
waiting is where i will remain
A week from today, I will be finishing my packing, saying last good-byes, and getting ready to go to the airport. It’s so weird, honestly, and in many ways it still seems really far away, just because there is so much to do between now and then.
I’m filled with so many emotions, and my heart is pulled and torn so many ways. I knew this day would come, but it doesn’t make it any easier, and it doe
sn’t make the future seem any clearer, it just gets scarier and makes me more afraid, to be honest.
I’m also confronted with questions about God, his character, and who he is. I know that he is so good, and scripturally we know he never will leave us, but I question his involvement in our lives, free will, and how much control he really has in our lives. I think these are healthy questions to ask, and frankly I don’t have answers for them. I believe that there are a number of paths to choose for my life at this point, but I do want his best, and I suppose in faith I need to trust in the leading of His spirit inside my heart, and trust his voice. I knew that peace and his voice when it was time for me to come to Thailand, so I need to trust for that same peace when looking at the future.
Easier said than done.