And the journey begins!
It’s the beginning of the last quarter of the year, and already there is much anticipation about how the year will end and what is to be expected in the New Year. In this part of the world, a lot of importance is attached to times and seasons. I guess this is a carryover from our African ancestors and their superstitious beliefs. There is much emphasis in finishing the year right and starting off the next one on the right footing. There is also a lot of anticipation about getting all pending requests for the year answered by God.
Indeed, God is a God of times and seasons. Unlike us however, His timing is very different, as He is not limited to the times and seasons of our traditional calendars. Instead, God has as many seasons as there are people, because each person operates in God’s own pre-determined season and timing. So while it may be summertime in my career, it might be winter in someone else’s. Also, within an individual’s life, it may be summertime career-wise, while it is autumn in their marriage or in their health.
I find this particularly interesting, as it means a person becomes the sum of the different areas of their lives and decisions taken in one area can actually impact other areas positively or negatively.
I am also a fan of pointing out the obvious, as you may have noticed. There are a lot of things that we know about life, that we do not realise we know, until someone points them out to us. For example, how is it that we make a lot of important decisions affecting our lives when we are too young to know any better? Career choices, what to study, where to go to school, who to date, who to marry etc. These decisions are often made at the time when we are not even adults yet (under 21 years old), and yet these decisions carry us through most of our lives (or fail to carry us, as the case may be).
This brings me to the awesomeness of God and His operations in the lives of men. It also tells me that, although we may not be aware of it, His voice guides us through our lives, directing our steps in line with His purpose, even when we are oblivious of Him or His plan for our lives.
How does a child know that he/she wants to be a doctor, or loves children, or wants to be an engineer, a nurse, a writer, a teacher etc.? How does one child feel the pull towards charity and helping people while another is drawn towards engineering, wanting to know how machines work etc.? Why do we like the things we like as children?
When I was growing up, it was the norm for parents to direct their children towards professional courses and careers they felt would be most lucrative for their children – medicine, engineering, law, pharmacy, accounting etc. No parent looked forward to a child studying education for example, or even languages, or anything to do with the arts. To them, that would be a waste of time and money. Every parent wanted children with viable and ‘in-demand’ career paths.
Fast forward 20 years, we now have parents who leave the children to choose and children are choosing amazing careers that I cannot understand – photography, cooking, sewing (and designing), make-up artistry etc. What we would ordinarily have referred to as manual or non-viable professions. It is indeed interesting that not only are today’s parents encouraging their children in these professions, they are actually supporting them with money, to help see their dreams actualized!
So, back to the beginning. How do these interests develop? Could it be gene-related? Who packages the genes in each human being? How come children born from the same parents can be so different from each other? How does God put together different features and attributes to create a unique individual each time? It is so fascinating that if a couple has 20 children together, each child comes out uniquely different from all others, even when the gene pool is the same. The children may look similar, share certain traits and features, even share similar likes and dislikes, but each one looks, thinks and is unique and different from the other one.
These are some of the things that we know but we forget. The awesomeness of it all!
So what is my conclusion? As we draw close to the end of this year, 2018, go ahead and take the liberty to be yourself, in your own season and timing. Try not to look at someone’s watch to tell the time. Your time is different from theirs. Do your own thing. Run your own race, because in the midst of it all, God’s hands are guiding you, His voice leading you to be the best that He has purposed for you to be. He will never leave you, He will never forsake you. (Deut. 31:6, Heb. 13:5, Gen. 28:15)