Friday, July 21, 2006
Doing Something Big
Lately I've been having these feelings. A yearning. Of wanting to be a part of something "big", something significant. It's hard to explain. I want to stand out in my area of expertise, to be recognized in my field. It's not about being popular or famous but being sought out or referred to because of my reliability and value. This desire coincides with getting the above fortune from Mr. Lu's and reading The Bone Woman by Clea Koff.
Koff, a forensic anthropologist, was twenty-three when she went to Rwanda on the UN's first Internationl Criminal Tribunal to collect evidence of genocide. For years she knew she wanted to fight human rights abuses by reading their bones and speaking for them. She describes a day "at work" while in Bosnia:
Nine hours of clearing earth from on top of bodies and disengaging their limbs from one another for transfer to body bags was uniquely mellowing and fulfilling for me.
This is someone who has passion and drive and a clear sense of their own purpose. I think most struggle their entire lives hoping to find their purpose or that someone would simply tell them what it is. Yes, yes, my purpose is to glorify God. But how? We each are uniquely gifted so why is it that we are so confused about it?
I don't think knowing my purpose before the fact is necessary. The only necessary thing is doing. Making choices. Taking risks. Listening. Moving. Clearly defining my purpose ahead of time is not a requirement of accomplishment. In doing I discover purpose. "I should've studied anthropology." "I should've __________" is not moving. It's avoidance, denial, and rejection.
Don't misinterpret this post. It's really a personal pep talk not a sermon. When these feelings first cropped up I asked My Geek, "What possible significance could I be a part of? I'm so... average." (Insignificant was actually the word I thought.)
I'm not sure why I'm having these feelings of being a part of "something big". It could be because I'm getting older and I'm looking at the sum of my life and wondering if it adds up. It could be how the popular culture rewards pompous and unprincipled behavior. Or it could be that I have only just begun.