Sometimes I feel like I was made for more, more than what my current life is. Recently I’ve been feeling it rather strongly––this nagging sensation that I have more potential inside me than I’m tapping into. And that nagging feeling is leading to frustration.
Could this just be Millennial hubris (as my brother has been saying)? Am I just another example of Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy?
I have never thought of myself as ambitious. I’m the girl who isn’t ashamed to tell rich lawyers that she teaches after school English for a living. I was the high schooler who said she wanted to be a secretary when she grew up. But while I’m not ambitious about attaining wealth or fame, I do find I need to be challenged. The past four years living here in Korea, I have grown accustomed to a certain breakneck speed when it comes to personal growth. From getting my first job to leading my first ministry to moving cities, there have been more than enough challenges thrown my way.
I feel like it’s time for the next challenge! But what in the world could that be?!
Making a Difference
The thing is, it’s not all about me. As Rick Warren starts his book A Purpose-Driven Life, “It’s not about you.” That’s true. All too often, we are far more self-centered than is warranted.
But, I genuinely feel like I was created to make the world a better place. When I was younger, people talking about wanting to “change the world” seemed like, well, hubris. But now, I understand that desire to make a difference. I understand that conviction deep inside that you can. In some way, you can.
If you can’t change the world for the better, then what is the point of living on this earth, really?
It’s a complex question that I am still sorting through, but here’s one point of clarity I’ve reached:
Sometimes what the world needs is simply for you to be faithful.
It may not be flashy or terribly thrilling much of the time, but faithfully manning your post is powerful. Whatever your role is, it is needed. Teacher, leader, mother, father, supporter, atmosphere lifter, discerning eye, organizer, helper, visionary, guard, host, communicator, protector, cleaner, planner. All the roles are vital!
Take teaching, for example. Kids need teachers and role models. I get to be that for my students. Sure, if I left, someone else would fill my shoes. Sure, the students may have other good role models in their lives. But the influence I have in my students’ lives is significant, whether or not I find the work personally challenging. It has intrinsic value that is separate from my emotions.
I will never stop pursuing personal growth, and I would never be one to promote complacent living. But right now, I am also working on recognizing the full value of the roles I currently fill. I’m starting to see that what seemed stagnant isn’t as static as I thought.
Little by little, things are growing, progress is being made, and people are learning, including myself.
I’m starting to realize that quietly, subtly, slowly, I am already changing the world.