Peaks and Valleys

Faith:

Psalm 23:1-4 (MSG): “God, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing. You have bedded me down in lush meadows, you find me quiet pools to drink from. True to your word, you let me catch my breath and send me in the right direction. Even when the way goes through Death Valley, I’m not afraid when you walk at my side. Your trusty shepherd’s crook makes me feel secure.”

It’s incredibly easy to blame God when we have wants or hurts and forget to bless God when there’s abundance. If you thought life was linear–a completely uphill slope just like in math class–you might need to have a spiritual disappointment. There were times when even Jesus was disappointed in life, people, and God, although there’s one key difference: He didn’t lose sight of the purpose and promise laid out for him by God.

Want to know what’s unique about valleys? That’s where the vegetation grows and where flowers bloom. It can be very difficult to see the sun from the valley, and it can also be hard to see what lies ahead when you’re stuck in a downward slump. It can feel very demoralizing, and you might feel like God is to blame for your current situation.

But think about this advantage: From this vantage point, you’re able to grow. You’re able to consume all of the spiritual nutrients you need and take advantage of the healing, personal and spiritual development, and wisdom. These are all free gifts from God–use them! I don’t think it’s any coincidence that the valleys are in a more humbling position in relation to the mountains. I think it’s very easy for us to forget God is elevated when we’re on mountains.

So what happens after we grow? We can reap our harvest on the mountains, dancing and praising and shouting onto God. Let’s be believers who can grow fruit even at the non-peak times (get it?).

Life:

I’m having a very long week, full of rollercoaster emotional rides related to my work performance and trying to establish a legacy while still knowing I am not going to stay in this corner of the world very long.

I really wish that God would provide me with a huge vision, idealistically with flashing lights and a neon sign, that tells me what my future should look like and what career path I should follow. Right now if you traced my career path from post-college to now, it’d look like the drunken walk of someone still so much wiser than me.

If it’s nursing, let me find the passion to pursue it. If it’s something else, I would love divine inspiration to know what that something else is. If it’s working in a non-profit or starting my own business or going back to school or being a mother…I’ll take any of them! I just want clarity so I can follow with an open heart and be passionate about it. I hate living a lackluster life.

I realize your life can still have meaning in spite of your job, but I spent so much time at my job a week that I’d love to enjoy it. And I really don’t think that this is me being selfish. I don’t think God intends for us to live lives that are unfulfilling (outside of him fulfilling us spiritually).

I’d love to find some resources, preferably from Christian sources, about how to find your purpose or calling or career.

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