Friday, September 2, 2011

"I'm ... but" Generation

"I hated doing something I loved outside of work, feeling alive and engaged, only to have it all disappear the moment I walked through the door of my day job. I didn't hate the work per se. I liked my boss and the people I worked with. It wasn't that. I just hated that forty hours of my week didn't feel anything like the few hours of my weekend when life made sense.
I hated that my dreams had to go into hibernation every Monday morning." -Jon Acuff, Quitter

"I'm a ____________, but I want to be a _____________." This statement seems to constantly linger on the tip of the tongue. When asked what you do your answer seems to instinctively sounds similar to this: "Well, for right now I ..." Though this is a correct reflection of your current situation, but by not voicing a permanence to it you are sunbconciously allowing yourself to continue to hold onto the "but I want to be ____" portion.
     Have you ever met someone who had given up and reconciled themselves solely to the former portion of the statement and thereby giving up on the latter? They're miserable. It's evident that their joyless state in their job has stretch to extend into a joyless state in life. This is the gap between what God created in us for us to do and what we are choosing to do.
     Contrary to Aldous Huxley's Brave New World standard of machine stamped babies, we are carefully crafted. Think of something handcrafted and you will inevitably dwell on the deliberateness and detail that went into the work. We are God's work. He designed and created our beings- physical self, personality, interests and abilities (gifts)! Psalm 139:14 says, "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful. I know that full well." It gives me goosebumps to think of the elements of my being being so carefully and loveingly instilled within me to create me the unique person that I am.
      And yet, in regard to work there is little guidance to discover those special qualities and in turn use those in your life's work. Your life's work, after all, ought to not be to glorify God? If we must deny who we are or what we're good (or interested in) for the sake of employment, then perhaps we should take note that this simply cannot be what God had intended as our purpose. We shouldn't try to fit ourselves into someone else's mold. So often we're tempted to accept a course because the outcome is well paying, respectable, or stable despite the misalignment of our personality or abilities to that position. Let the square fit in the square hole, and the circle in the circle. Each piece in it's proper home completes the puzzle. 1 Corinthians 12:18 states, "But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be." The hand works wonderfully attached to the arm, but attached to the foot it brings difficulty. The hand possesses unique qualities that allow it to be the best that it is just as it is. Similarly, we are endowed with gifts to allow us to be the best that we can just as we are. Romans 12:6a says, "We have different gifts, according to the grace given to us." Furthermore, 1 Peter 4:10 states, "Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in it's various forms."
        Why do we even attempt to ignore our gifts and attempt to assume another's? Fear. Fear of bucking convention and the imposed linear progression of life. We can have assurance that God's plan for us is solid. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understaning; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight."
        With that said, there may be times when you must complete the statement as follows: "I'm a wage worker, but I want to be a homemaker." You look at where you've been and you look at where you are now, and must admit that the "but I want..." simply isn't the case yet. For example, the mass and generic ushering into college can leave the aspiring homemaker or mother with the above statement. Is all lost? Only if we allow it to be. We can use our wage working now to be a way of life and disregard the latter statement. Or, we can use our wage working now to build to a time where we can confidently say "I quit" and move into our dream role. Use everything you can now to build to the point of one day saying, "I am ____" with excitement and genuine joy because you know that is exactly what you are the way you are.
      What makes your heart sing? What causes you to bubble over with joy in life? That is your clue to your direction. Guard your steps to move in that direction.
       My heart is exclusively for home and family, and despite my circumstances now or to come that will always be its resting state. In the meanwhile of completing my "I'm ... but" statement, I consider this time to be that of building, not just financially but also personally. I've always been the crafty kid. It's my joy. Is there anything so satisfying as pouring yourself into the work you create with your own hands? My spirit soars to new heights as I embrace fully the beauty of the Creator and His creations (us).With each project and with each bit of time working in my heart I rest in knowing that I am one step closer to saying "I quit" and now "I am." To share this delight as well as encourage the greater growth of our travel towards home and family, I am overjoyed to present:



  1. Oh congratulations on your Etsy Shop - is this something that you can now do full-time? I think that's wonderful. Good word - working towards what we can be!


  2. Visiting from Gratituesday. That video clip was amazing. It almost made me cry - I'm one of those "I'm a but" people. I have a plan to get to my "but I wanna be a" point and I'm making steady progress. It's hard when you're trapped though. (It's not that easy to up and quit a crappy job in this economy) But that clip and your post was just the motivation I needed to keep on keeping on! THanks for sharing.

  3. Great commentary on yes....but (and on the "mass and generic" ushering into college! I think the tide may be turning on that trend....I guess we'll see.)

    I love etsy: the fun of buying from individual artist crafters, and the sellers who get to earn an income (be it small or large) by doing what they love!



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