It’s amazing how God brought me to where I am today. What I thought my current life was going to be in the past is nothing like where it is today. Though much of my past dreams and goals have been shattered, I have never been happier and more fulfilled. This is the journey God has brought me on and I believe He continues to do amazing things in my life, despite the obstacles and pain I have felt in my life. Here’s what I thought in the past, and how God and life’s circumstances have redefined these thoughts:
- When I was younger, I thought to be successful career-wise and making a lot of money was important, especially the former part. –So, during my childhood and teenage years, I wanted to be everything from an astronaut to a microbiologist. So, I wanted to go to a prestigious college to make that happen. Obviously, none of that came to fruition. I did go to college and have some jobs, but nothing even close to my childhood “dream jobs.” I’m not that successful (at least in my mind) career- wise and still have a long way to go, but what I have realized is that it doesn’t matter that much anymore. Sure, I still want very much to be successful and excel in my current job, but I will never be a doctor or a microbiologist. However, God has been using me for a greater purpose than my own selfish desires. And in that, I feel fulfilled and happy.
- When I was younger, I longed to be loved and accepted by my peers and others around me. —When I was growing up, I didn’t have a lot of close friends. I often felt alone and excluded. I was often the last (or one of the last) to be picked for team activities at school. In addition, I was often bullied and teased by my peers and manipulated by several people for their own selfish pleasures. I felt worthless and unappreciated. However, when I became a follower of Christ, that started, albeit slowly, to change for me. I became a new creation! (2 Corinthians 5:17) I have only realized (sadly enough) in the past month or so, that I didn’t have to worry about what other people thought of me. I don’t have to strive to be loved and accepted by others anymore because even if everyone I knew left and/or rejected me, I will always be loved and cared about by God. Sure, I still struggle with this concept sometimes, even today, but I feel more loved today than I did even ten years ago! Also, my past experiences of being bullied, teased, and rejected by my peers and others, have helped me to be more compassionate and caring of others around me who have gone through or are going through similar situations. It has also helped me to persevere through relationships and never give up on people.
- When I was younger, I lived primarily for myself and my own desires.–If you met me when I was younger than a teenager, you would have not liked me very much because I was very selfish. I wanted things done in my time and in my way. I drove people away because I took up so much emotional energy. God redefined my younger-me mindset in a big way because when I met Jesus and even more now, I have realized that life is not about me. Of course, I still struggle with reverting back to my younger, self-centered mindset sometimes, but then God pricks my conscience and enables me to think of others again. Now, I want to serve others wholeheartedly and show as many people as possible the love that God gave to me because it is not about me, it’s about Him! Yes, I often fail at this, but God’s love urges me to try again and then this time succeed in what he has called me. With God’s help, I have made great strides in this area. I am more open to other people’s plans and desires than I was when I was younger, and it’s all to God’s glory and majesty working in my life.
This is just a sampling of my life’s journey. Though many of my past dreams have been shattered, I could not imagine what my life would be like right now. It’s so much more fulfilling than I could have ever dreamed or imagined, and I could have never guessed that God would be such a big part of my life like He is now, and for that I am eternally grateful.