Somewhere around this age:
I decided I wanted to be a ballerina when I grew up.
Never mind that I had never taken nor would ever take a dance class, the tiny figurine on the top of my music box was beautiful and wore a pink tutu and that was enough.
I also went ahead and put in a request to my parents that my name be changed to “Music Box Dancer,” just to prove how dedicated I was.
But then in Kindergarten we visited the hospital on a field trip, and the nurse got to wear a cute hat. So I became future Nurse Hannah.
Somewhere around third grade I wanted to be a singer. Hehe.
In middle school it was a zoologist/marine biologist/archeologist because they got to hang out with cool animals and/or have Temple of Doom-style adventures.
In high school I had no idea.
And college came and all of the sudden this got serious. I had to pick something. Now.
I also happened to be in love with a redheaded fella who went to another university an hour away and we were going to get hitched soon and picking a major that required even half a credit hour over what I had to have to graduate in four years was absolutely not going to happen.
So I picked the easiest major I could find.
And in case you were wondering, young people, this is NOT A GOOD PLAN.
So here I am now; a stay-at-home mom with half a gaggle of kids and the closest thing to a cute nurses hat I will likely ever wear.
But God is sovereign.
I can see now that he had a plan for me all along, in spite of my college-aged slackerness and general disinterest.
With no major career aspirations to tempt me, it was an easy transition to become a stay-at-home mom. (I understand that this is not the case for many women, and I respect how difficult the decision is, whatever they decide.)
But for anyone, no matter the career field, I imagine that the battles waging in our minds at any given time are not all too different.
I change diapers and pick up toys and wonder if any of this even matters.
You deal with cranky customers and file paperwork and wonder if any of this even matters.
I work with little sinners all day.
You work with large sinners all day.
I do not get paid.
You get paid gobs of money.
I confessed my feelings to Josh the other day. I said I wasn’t sure that I was doing what I was supposed to be doing on this earth, and I didn’t want to waste the short time I’ve been given here.
He confessed that he felt the same way.
“What?!?!” was my brilliant response. The man works for a church! How could he ever wonder if what he was doing was not what God wanted him to do? Church work seems like it would rank real high on God’s “Favorite Human Jobs” list.
But his honesty was refreshing.
We are none of us exempt from wondering if what we’re doing is making a difference, and we are none of us exempt from the Truth, either.
(Don’t miss this!)
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” Colossians 2:23-24.
We went to a funeral earlier this week.
A young man we had known in high school had taken his own life. It was tragic and awful, and while I will not presume to understand his reasons or try to explain it, one thing stood out to me at his funeral.
His life had made ripples.
He was not wildly successful or well known, overly wise or wealthy, but his existence had had an impact on a church full of people.
They felt his loss and the now-absence of a life that had rippled generations outward, however unbeknownst to him.
His life had made a difference, whether he realized it or not.
Yes, there are days when it’s hard to fathom, but these lives we lead, however small and insignificant they feel, are making ripples.
If we are walking in God’s will, he has us where he wants us and that’s a good spot to be in.
The really good news is that no matter how tough or mundane our job is now, no matter how small (or nonexistent) the paycheck, no matter how thankless or insignificant what we’re doing seems, God promises us an eternity’s-worth of payback.
And that reward will absolutely be worth it all.