I have always been blessed to surround myself with people smarter than me (yes there is a joke in there somewhere). This has become more evident the more I feel like I have struggled with my faith life and the more I try to find ways to get back on the right track. In the past couple weeks, I have had the opportunity to listen and comprehend from some men and children that I greatly admire.
What is the meaning/purpose of life? If you were to ask a dozen years ago or so, I would have answered much different than I might now. Now I focus on my four boys and wife and getting them to Heaven and if God has enough pity, maybe I can be lucky enough to get there at some point as well. However, there is that often stressful thing called “life on Earth” that can be consuming and get you off that purpose-filled track. It can also lead to amazing conversations and prayer that start to shed a light on what your purpose is on earth.
Not so long ago, I was floating in the lake and the question was thrown out, “If money were no object, what would you want to do in life career wise?” One answered a photographer. One answered running a charity full time. One wanted to be involved in sports. When it came to my turn, I had no answer. I have never had an answer to questions like this, which led me to an unhappy 11-year career in public education. This has led me to stress and worry and unfortunately this has been passed on to my wife as she has tried to help. Because of having no immediate answer, I pondered this question over the course of the next week because I could not let it go.
Fast forward to Omaha and our families long weekend vacation. One night as we were drifting off to sleep and I am lying in bed with 2 of my sleeping sons, I start the conversation in prayer, “God, if money were no object, talent (or lack of) would not be an issue, where at this point in my life do you want me and what am I doing here to fulfill the rest of my days?” As in the Bible, the answer from God did not come in some loud booming obvious answer, it came in a whisper in the form of my sleeping son. I felt His saying my role is to struggle so my children do not have to. As I prayed more on this feeling, I immediately regretted not having my computer to put thoughts down.
It is no secret to those who know me, I have taken a road less traveled to get where I am and looking back, I would dare to say I wouldn’t change much of anything as the outcome would be entirely different. However, if i can take those bad experiences and change them into a life lesson for myself or my kids so they do not have to follow in my footsteps, that is a struggle I will gladly take. Do I feel my children will never struggle, no way and I hope they do? The struggle will build character and life lessons of their own. However, I have been told by God to be there for them when they do, to provide guidance and love, care and support.
So What About Me?
So, back to the original question, if money were not an issue, what would you do career wise? My answer is still that I haven’t a clue but this question led me to the answer that my wife and children need to become the larger focus of my life again. I need to set the better example and as my oldest prepares for 4th grade, I need to start preparing him more for life while finding the balance of him still being a kid.
I have a looooonnnnngggg way to go. Some days I feel I am taking 1 step forward and 3 steps back in this journey. I am far from being a great dad and husband and by listening to my children. Who I greatly admire, I have learned I have a lot of “damage” I have to find a way to go back and fix.
What is your purpose? I am sure if you are reading this blog, your overall goal is very similar to mine as far as working on a Heavenly reward, but what is your approach? What are you doing to work on it? And, by the way, if there were no limitations, I would probably say I want to be a pilot.