It was one conversation, told to me over 15 years ago. Words meant to point me in the right direction.
But obviously, it meant something to me, since I can still remember it, scene and all.
"You don't want to do that. That would be a waste of your intelligence. You would be wasting your life."
This is what was said to me after I told someone I didn't want to go to college. All I really wanted to do was work with underprivileged people and someday, hopefully, be a mom.
But a high school senior sitting with a near perfect grade-point average (curses Physics and your B+!) stating that that was as far as she was going with her education....well, that didn't set well with this person.
So, I did what any easily-influenced teenager would do....I went to college.
I found a degree that allowed me to work with and help people and get my schooling done in less than two years. And then worked that field for 8 years.
7 years later I'm not anywhere close to that, doing something that I truly enjoy, that fits my introverted, highly organized brain quite well.
So, why was I thinking I should be doing something else? Why was I thinking I was maybe 'wasting my life' like the "sage' advice from years ago?
Truthfully, it was something I was wrangling with for quite awhile. I felt like I would turn the question over and over in my mind, never quite able to put my finger on the answer.
How do you define it?
Does it line up with what the world sees as success?
Or what God would see as success?
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Just as I went through Romans Chapter 12 last year, I am focusing on Colossians Chapter 3 this year. The verses that I was focusing on this month were the first two verses.
I read them at the beginning of the month, not really connecting them to my struggle with how I view myself in relating to my "career choices." Then, earlier this week, it suddenly occurred to me. And I had to read the words over again, out loud, to myself.
I have been risen with Christ, I need to set my heart of the things that matter to God, not focusing on what matters to this world.
You don't have to keep up with the Joneses. You don't have to measure yourself with the world's yard stick of success.
Isn't that a relief!?
Your struggle may not be how many letters of degrees you have behind you name.
Maybe it's the state of your home.
The size of your bank account.
The make and model of your car.
Where is your heart set?
Things that matter to God? Salvation. Mercy. Loving your enemy. Helping the orphans and widows.
Or things that the latest Tweet or Facebook status tells you: the best home, the best job, the best children, the best vacations...
If you can find yourself relating to the second list even a little then let's step off this merry-go-round.
Let's sit down with the Truth.
And find out what really matters.