If there’s one thing God has revealed to me in past weeks, it’s that living a life for Him happens on a day to day basis.
I am someone who often dreams of and plans for the future, and thinks of each of my decisions and its’ significance for the rest of my life. This is not necessarily a bad thing; after all, we are called to live in perspective of eternity. However, it’s really hard to think of how I can live for God in the future, when I’m struggling to surrender my Monday to Him.
Perhaps you’ve experienced this?
I spent last week at an all-expense paid conference in New York City, as part of my scholarship with the Emma Bowen Foundation for Minorities with Interests in Media, as an Emma Bowen Scholar, I get placed at a really nice internship with Turner Broadcasting each summer, with a nice paycheck, and even better opportunities. During the conference, we attended seminars and networking events to meet and mingle with media executives from major companies, who understand the need for and value of diversity in the workplace. The program is highly selective, so you can only imagine how encouraging it was to hear people with dream jobs tell you that you’re on the ‘right’path.
Yes, it felt good, but I also felt convicted. (For one, whenever things are going too well, I tend to wonder if there’s a spiritual struggle I’m supposed to be overcoming that I’m not cognizant of. This is why the Spirit sends me articles like Relevant Magazine’s “The Importance of Having Fun.”) I feel a great passion for international development, and I’m increasingly made aware of social injustices around the world, from wealth disparities to women’s rights. My point of conflict is feeling like I need to decide to choose the media executive path, or the humble international worker, when God hasn’t told me that I need to choose either, at this point in my life.
During the conference, looking around at the other interns--well-dressed, high achieving students eager to establish connections and develop resumes-- I felt so…unsettled. I wrote in my notebook, “Jesus, why am I here?” Feeling the need for Him to tell me why He’d given me so much privilege, I sat waiting, wondering which of my mentors and friends would offer the best advice.
However, during the few days I was up there, I remembered a decision I’d made during summer conference with InterVarsity before I left school; to surrender to Him, daily. I was reminded that the most potent decisions a follower of Christ can make is not necessarily the big “Yes” moment that comes on an unexpected day, though it can be. It’s saying yes to the small things that happen each day, like being polite in the early morning although crankiness wants to take charge, or thinking about how articles I want to write will point readers to thinking of how they can love their neighbors, and grow their God-given gifts.
The conference was fun, and full of bonding with other interns, laughing and getting to know visiting professionals, and catching up with old friends who were interning in New York for the summer. I found that living my calling was not focused on how well I did during a marketing challenge presentation, but how I interacted with the other students on my team. It wasn’t about flying from place to place, but being able to have spiritual conversations and even pray for another intern I’d been getting closer to on the plane ride home.
Serving God in your career, or in life, means serving Him every day, and using the opportunities you’re given to let His character show through you. Whether or not I know the exact path my career will take, I can never get “there” if I don’t start by following Him faithfully here, and now. In fact, I’m actually convinced that my ‘career’ will be a combination of working with media, the arts and building international relationships that foster cross-cultural collaborations, which will bring light and justice to the women and communities all over the world that are close to my heart. I find things, and learn about people and organizations each day-literally, every day- that resonate strongly with this idea, and I’m sure that as I lean in and allow God to lead me, He will surely reconcile my passions and my purpose.
It all starts with me being faithful at each point I find myself in. On that note, back to being an intern at CNN Digital…I’ve got an article to write ;)