Thursday, December 2, 2010

Sound the Trumpet

Do you ever find yourself pondering the meaning of life? I do. There are endless songs, poems and odes written to describe what is deemed to be the unattainable answer by artists and philosophers alike.

For what purpose are we here? Is it to achieve the pinnacle of success as a person? Or as a child of God? Are we to use the talents we have been given to advance our own interests, or serve the Almighty by helping others? What are we to become as we establish our place in the world? Is it possible to do all of the aforementioned, and still maintain the faith and integrity of leading a Christian life?

A lot of questions, I know. Lately, though I’m in a great place in my journey, I find myself wondering what I’m supposed to do with the rest of my life. God has blessed me with numerous talents, and not too long ago, I was modest in admitting that. Among the many things I love to do, and do well, are designing/painting/sketching, singing, playing the guitar/viola/violin/piano (more adept at some over others), and writing. I also love to make jewelry. And I can pick up objects, open/close doors, and pinch people with my long toes. Not a talent mind you, but a still a freakish quirk to be proud of.

So where does that leave me? One can't ride two horses at once, and sometimes I feel like I’m trying to ride an entire herd. What irritates me even more is that I’m ashamed for it to be a problem I have, as I know there are others out there who are struggling just to make it down a single path in life. I’m through questioning whether or not I’m deserving of good things happening to me. God is responsible for that, and I will most certainly be thankful for my gifts. And at the same time, I’ve dealt with a lot of heartache to get to these good moments. Maybe we’re all due for a break now and then.

It’s all give and take, ebb and flow. For everything positive, there has been a negative. Some of which have occurred in the past. Others recently. Retrospectively, for every negative, there has been a positive.

I can’t help but think that all of these encouraging moments and opportunities in my life are leading up to something of a grander nature. Do I want my name in the marquis lights? Not really. But, I would like to know that I have the abilities to put it there if I so desire. I don’t aim to be famous. I do aim to make something of myself. An honest version of what’s inside me. No smoke and mirrors. Something I’m proud of. Something that lets my parents know that they raised me right. Most of all, I aspire to honor the skills that God has given me, for I would be nothing and nowhere without Him.

Coming back to my original question…what is the meaning of life? Everyone has his version of what that entails. For some people, it’s the designer clothes, car, house and salary. For others, it is to raise a family and grow old with their significant other. And still others are satisfied with the simple things, like a hot cup of coffee in the morning, or listening to the evening wind rustle the leaves in the trees. For a select few, it’s accepting a wholesome life in the Spirit, teaching and guiding others. There is no greater sacrifice, than giving of oneself to lead others to salvation through Christ.

I’d like to think I’m able to obtain a combination of all of the above...financially successful, but humbled by my upbringing…love another with all of my heart, and create a lifelong legacy through raising our children…and remember to stop and smell the roses…all while being a faithful servant to the Lord, and a good Christian example to those in my life.

Perhaps the secret of life is simple. To me, it’s just simply living - every single day, being truly happy with who you are, and making a difference in the world. That world may be as small as a family unit, or beyond the boundaries of our imaginations.

Years ago when I was a little girl, I had a black and white poster, showing the progression of a gosling growing into a graceful swan. At the bottom of that poster was what remains one of my favorite quotes to this day: "What you are is God's gift to you. What you become is your gift to God." (Hans Urs von Balthasar)

Even now as I sit here and type this, I’m reminded of my ‘ugly duckling’ days. That was then. This is now. I'm ready to embrace the beauty in life; the ‘swan' that God put inside me.

What will I become? It’s time to sound my trumpet and spread my wings.

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