Life can be, indeed often is, confusing. We often mix up the right and wrong things, coming up with hybrid ideas that are neither good nor bad, but mediocre.
Knowing this is important. We want to avoid being mediocre as nothing is accomplished other than restricting one’s full potential.
Mediocrity is the objective of the enemy whose modus operandi is simply “anything but the truth.” This translates into anything that will avoid the success that we have already defined as being truly worthwhile, which is how we serve others.
When addressing the Laodicean Church in the second chapter of Revelation, the Lord detested mediocrity. He would that we be either hot or cold rather than lukewarm, as those specializing in neither are useless or mediocre.
Again, never settle for less than your best, even going so far as challenging yourself to stretch. That is when God can also do His best. However, I will not hide the fact that doing so can be daunting.
Many years ago, when I first determined to live my life for Jesus, I was frustrated by all the things I thought I needed to do in order to live a fulfilling Christian life.
When I shared this frustration with an older brother, he asked me for an example of what I was struggling with. When I cited the Beatitudes, he informed me of the fact that these were “be” attitudes, not “do” attitudes! This statement changed my life!
Similarly, a career is much more a matter of being than of doing. People “doing” things that they are not enjoying is a sure formula for “being” unhappy and discontented in their careers.
The following excerpt of a statement made by Chuck Swindoll in one of his “Insights For Living” does a very good job of clarifying this for us:
… “Doing is usually connected with a vocation or career, how we make a living. Being is much deeper. It relates to character, who we are, and how we make a life. Doing is tied in closely with activity, accomplishments, and tangible things—like salary, prestige, involvements, roles, and trophies.
Being, on the other hand, has more to do with intangibles, the kind of people we become down inside, much of which can’t be measured by objective yardsticks and impressive awards. Of the two, being will ultimately outdistance doing every time. It may take half a lifetime to perfect…but hands down, it’s far more valuable…and lasting…and inspiring. That is what is meant by success.
Believing in the authority of holy Scripture, knowing and loving God, bowing to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, committing ourselves to others, and becoming people of genuine encouragement. Such traditions (there are others, of course) are valuable absolutes that keep us from feeling awash in a world of relativism and uncertainty.
Clearly, my position is on the side of openness, allowing room for the untried, the unpredictable, the unexpected—all the while holding fast to the truth. Believe me, there are plenty of people around who feel it is their calling to tell others what to do and what to say. They are self-appointed wing-clippers who frown on new ways and put down high flight. They work hard to “squeeze you into their mould.”…
Well said. But just as important as not aiming high enough is the potential for aiming too high which invites “frustration,” or going in the wrong direction, which invites “discontentment”.
Being comfortable with yourself as being part of a particular career is your ultimate goal. However, being uncertain about your future requires faith that we will be “steered” in the right direction, and once again we need to understand that God sees to this if we are doing our part.
Let me give you an example that you will be sure to understand.
Children often sit behind the steering wheel in a vehicle, pretending to turn the wheel and pushing all kinds of buttons, acting as though they are really going places. But they are going nowhere because the vehicle isn’t moving. It cannot be steered or directed.
Similarly, God can only steer or direct people if they are moving, that is, making an effort to find their place.
Careers is one of my least favourite topics because I have a tendency to sound a bit schizophrenic or double-minded. On the one hand, I encourage students to trust God with their future and on the other I encourage them to make it happen.
Laying around expecting God to do something about your life is about as productive as steering a parked car. Just as foolish, is running ahead of God into a future you know nothing about.
Nobody gets in a vehicle with the objective of finding out where they are going once they get there. Be wise, have a well-researched and exact plan as you drive to your destination in life, using God as your GPS.
The best made plans are soaked in prayer, proceeded with caution and studied circumspectly. Move, so God can steer you.