It’s hard to write an entry like this and not feel like the next 300 words will be seen as bitchy or complaining. Either way, I have to admit, that here, in this present time and place, I am not where I want to be or where I imagined I would be at 24. Let me explain.
I Completed High School in 2002. Great. My Senior year of High School I was voted by my peers “Best Christian Character” and was also made Class Chaplain. Everything seemed good. I worked my ass off to get together enough scholarship money to attend Southern Wesleyan University. Did that for two years, majoring in Christian Ministry and minoring in Youth. I was on the fast track to achieve what I thought was my calling, my dream of being a Youth Pastor. I sat in classes dreaming, thinking of the day I would have a Youth Group of my own, having teens over to the house, pizza parties, and leading trips to overseas countries.
I left Southern Wesleyan in May of 2004 and enrolled at Columbia International University, still with a goal/calling of becoming a Youth Pastor, but things around me were quickly falling apart. I was faced with a personal sin struggle and the scars of coming from a family that was less than perfect. My mom was/is great, but I still had to deal with and face shit that no kid should ever have to go though. Everything caught up with me. Everything hit me all at once. All the emotions, the fear, all of the shit from the past could no longer fit under the rug.
I somehow tried to balance 18 hours of classes, a 30+ hour a week job, university required hands on ministry, as well as personal counseling. It was too much. I decided that the fall 2005 semester would be my last at CIU. I felt the “okay from the Lord” to step away from school and to simply live. At that time I thought this would be working full time, at that time for Starbucks and doing some intensive counseling.
Fast-forward to today. January 24th 2008:
–It’s been 2 years of no college. I’ve toyed with the idea of going back, but I have no desire to become a Youth Pastor. To be honest, I hate teenagers. I find them to be annoying, disrespectful and unappreciative.
–I’ve done a few counseling sessions here and there, yet I’m still not “repaired”. So far I am on my 8th counselor. I get scared every time I start getting into the deeper issues. I don’t think my counselor has any idea.
–February 6th will mark the start of my third year working at Wachovia. Wachovia isn’t my dream job, but my benefits did cover my major back surgery last year that totaled over $120,000.00. (Yeah, you read that price right!) I have over a month and a half off paid vacation/sick time each year. I am respected by my coworkers and my boss, including senior leadership of the company. It’s a great job and I have been shown much favor. It’s just not where I dreamt I would be at 24.
–I currently facilitate a House Church (Conversations) that meets weekly at my house. Attendance is anywhere from 2 to 12. I feel like it’s moving forward and people’s lives are being changed as a result.
–I’m single. Have been for months. Some days I have a desire to date, or to at least make out with someone. Yet, other days I am perfectly content being single. I enjoy the alone time. It’s cheaper. Honestly, the idea of being responsible for a wife and caring for her financially, emotionally, being a spiritual leader— all of that scares the shit out of me. Caring for an 18 month old yellow lab named Killian is enough responsibility for now.
I say (or type) all of this because of this one point: THIS ISN’T WHERE I THOUGHT I WOULD BE AT 24.
I thought things would be different.
I thought I would have finished college and be working on my career.
I thought I would be dating or maybe even married.
I thought that my past wouldn’t still haunt me and have such an effect on my present.
I thought things would be easier.
I feel like I am stuck. I often find myself very discontent and feeling as if I am complacent.
My mom continually says she is proud of me. I often sit silently on the other end of the phone until she is done. During those times of praise the word “failure” continually repeats over and over in my mind. Tonight I question how I got here, what I am doing here, and where to go from here. Yes, there have been many amazing opportunities and blessings over the past several years. Wachovia has been a huge financial blessing as well as providing me with excellent medical benefits. My job has also taught me how the manage my money more effectively and laid groundwork for financial literacy and budgeting wisdom. My House Church has had lasting spiritual impact not only on myself, but on the others that come weekly. I love the house I rent in downtown Columbia and my roommate Rich has been more than a roommate, he’s a friend and a spiritual brother. I have the best dog a guy could ask for. (As I type she’s asleep next to me.)
Yet the word failure and the feelings of discontent and never amounting to anything replay over and over. I don’t think I’ve found my “it” yet. The “it” being the motivation, the passion, the thing I am supposed to go after and accomplish. Why for so long did I feel called to something, now to only feel a since of hate toward the group I once felt so passionately I was called to minister to full time? I feel like I am lacking direction and discernment for my own life. It’s easier for me to speak truth into someone else’s life and to hear from God for them rather than hear the voice of the Lord concerning my own life and His will for me.
I will keep walking- but it would just be nice to have an idea of where I am going.
Anyone else understand how I feel? Comment below.