I absolutely loved doing a travel season for admissions last fall. It was the definition of a perfect job for me. I got paid to drive all over the northeast in a gorgeous rental car, spending every day surrounded by fall foliage, ESPN radio, city lights, and Pandora soundtracks. I got to interact with people in a way I’m good at: meeting strangers, making a positive first impressive, and exchanging concrete data (majors and numbers) with a dash of harmless personal information (short stories and anecdotes about why Roberts is such a special place). At the end of every day I went back to a hotel room and (most of the time) happily prepared to move on the next day. At the end of most weeks I was back at home to recharge before heading out for another week of moving a mile a minute (literally).
Working fall travel was smack dab in the middle of my comfort zone, and I loved every minute of it.
That was nice. This season is not like that.
This season feels like God lovingly calling me out on every insecurity I have, every safety valve I’ve put on my life, and challenging me to change. The things I loved about travel season – the autonomy, the temporary commitment, the familiarity of the job, the daily change of pace – are not available to me here. Here, I’m part of a larger community. I’m committed. Most things are new and unfamiliar. Most days follow a defined structure.
It’s not that my well-worn way of life was wrong; it’s that He created me to be more than a self-sustained island with half-developed gifts that no one else experiences because visitor’s passes are hard to come by. And in this new season of life, it feels like He’s asking me to let Him take me off the island and bring me over to the mainland to see how life goes over there. With the other humans.
This verse from Romans 2 seems to ring true yet again:
“God is kind, but he’s not soft. In kindness he takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change.”
Radical life change is exactly what I’m being invited into right now. It pushes back against most of the natural instincts I have. But I love that it’s happening. I’m ready to move off the island.
Ironically, I am actually on my way to an island right now. By the time this is posted I will be somewhere in the sky en route to the Dominican Republic. How’s that for a surprise ending? I’ll be in the DR as part of my job with CURE, loving lots of kids and helping with photography and enjoying seeing the sun for an extended period of time.
I’ll be back in a week, home from islands both literal and figurative!