elisabethdanielsons

Seek justice, love mercy, walk humbly with your God.

Sabbath

on July 31, 2013

So how many of you remember when you were little and people would ask you what you wanted to be when you grow up? Most younger children will respond with doctor, teacher, football player, or rock star. People will smile and say that those responses are just so cute. When you are in middle school, you still get this question and  your answers better be more serious or people will look at you funny. Occasionally there are the marine biologists and writer but most youth will choose more mainstream choices. When you are in high school the question will change to where are you going to college and what is your major going to be. This shows the asker how serious you are about your future, and heaven forbid you still don’t know what you want to be because people will tell you what you should do based on what they think of you.

Then as you are in college, you are asked what are you going to do when you graduate, where do you want to live, and other questions similar to this. At this point the person being asked these questions gets a panicked look on their face because they have dreams of what they want to do but in reality probably won’t be able to find one of those jobs right out of college. And over 5 years after graduating from college, I honestly don’t know what I want to be when I grow up and I think that’s okay.

I feel such immense joy at finding a place where I can be happy, but  at the same time I only have one year left. Last year when people asked me what I was going to do after being a US-2, I would just stare at them. I kept telling people I have 2 years to figure that out so why should I worry about it? In truth, ever since I graduated from college my “what are you going to do” was uncertain. I was a nanny for a very brief period, worked as a Lead Teacher in a 2 year old room, taught kindergarten, worked at a grocery store behind the front desk, and worked in another 2 year old classroom. That’s not counting the few times that I subbed or the summer after college where I worked as a youth director at a small church and as the 3 year old teacher in another preschool. My life for the past few years has been pretty uncertain, and honestly I needed an emotion break from that uncertainty.

In November, I went to a conference put on by GBHEM where I was asked what I was going to do after US-2 by a recruiter for a seminary. When I told him that I was trying to take a break from thinking about my future, he said, “Oh, your taking a sabbath from worrying about your future. That’s very wise of you!” And so from then on when people asked me what I was going to do after US-2 I told them that I was taking a sabbath! It was genius because sabbath is a magical christainese word that means rest. It made me sound smart and serious and makes people stop harassing me about what I was “going to be when I grow up.”

In the past several months I have refined this to “I’m taking a sabbath from thinking about my future after Project Transformation because I want to be fully immersed and committed to my work here and now rather than thinking about what I’m going to do afterwards.” Genius, I tell you! Genius!  This has really helped me get out of answering those questions, but it has also helped me consciously not think about what comes after PT. It’s not healthy to worry, and let me tell you I am a worryohalic! I am a worrier! In fact one of the first Bible verses I memorized was Philippians 4:6-7 which is “Do not worry about anything, instead pray about everything. Tell God what  you need and thank him for all He has done. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” BAM! This was my go to verse for anytime I started freaking out about my future.

I have learned a lot about myself this year. This experience has given me a year of grace and ease that I don’t feel like I have ever truly had before. I have been challenged to do things way beyond my comfort zone and have accomplished many goals. Part of this success that I have felt is the wonderful organization that I work with, but it is also that I have intentionally set aside my worries about my future to dedicate my time to the work that I am currently doing.

Although, my time left here is limited, I still feel at ease with my future because I know God is here with me in the present, so why would he leave me in the future? I know I need to begin thinking about my future but now I feel like I have unlimited options, and I have faith that God will help me make the right decisions whether that be going to seminary here or far away, finding a job in a non-profit, or possibly even teaching again. God was here with me before, is here with me now, and will be here in my future.

 

 

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