Selasa, 16 September 2014

Finding Your Calling In Life (Part 1)

As a fresh doctor, newly graduated from medical school, I stood on the platform of the railway station in my town, ready to undertake the longest journey of my life, to discover my calling,

brimming with hope, excitement and youthful enthusiasm. Now almost forty years later I still keep journeying, and it is difficult to say if I have found the calling in my life. Calling, to me, embodied what I did to give maximum joy, sense of satisfaction and accomplishment, and more importantly being aware that I was fulfilling a role in life beyond myself, being a channel of God’s blessing to others. 

People who find their calling or what gives them purpose and maximum joy early in life are very fortunate. They are the ones who arrive at their destination directly. I must confess that it was not so with me. My life’s journey has been a voyage of exploration and i am still on the road traveling. Finding calling in life meant assuming diverse roles and accepting various situations - student, social worker, surgeon, scientist, teacher - in India, in Bhutan, in Australia, in small mission hospitals or outposts, in state of the art tertiary centres. A single overwhelming sense of calling persisted through the decades – the desire to be a healer, to be an instrument of healing for the injured, whether physical, psychological, emotional or relational.

I do not equate calling to career. To me career is a job which provides the means to live. Sometimes your career and your calling merge and then the synergy leads to immense satisfaction. At different phases in my life I have considered varying career options, pilot, priest, researcher, and administrator.
But whatever career I have chosen I believe I may have persisted in seeking to be a healer. The urge to heal has been the recurring compulsion, perhaps the mission of my life. Often my career helped me to fulfil my calling. There were times when the healing was merely superficial.

As I look back at life, it is on those occasions when my career enabled me to be a healer in its holistic sense that I found pure joy and subsequently developed a passion for that experience. Passion, in my understanding, is that which inspires one to choose a preferred way of working and living that permeates every aspect of life. It is the one thing in life that you want to experience and which makes you willing to forego many other things in life.

But now we go on to the difficultquestion of how one realises one’s calling or find a passionate pursuit in life? Many of us (assuming my readers are associated with health care in some way) were
convinced that we wanted to be involved in medical care while we were growing up, well before embarked on formal medical training. This conviction may have been influenced by our perception that this is a profession which is a means to attain status, position, power, prestige or becoming wealthy. But none of these in itself can bring happiness or fulfilment.

Search and discover your God- given gift
I believe that in each of us God has placed an inherent ability or gift. Some of us are creative and artistic, some of us have the ability to be good listeners, some are patient, some of us can be persistent and persevering even while doing mundane repetitive tasks. Some have a taste for adventure; others are good with people management skills or networking. A few are good at writing or are articulate. I feel that we should look for a career in an area of medicine that will potentiate our natural God- given gift or talent.
Having then gifts differing according to
the grace that is given to us,let us use them
–Romans 12:6

Look for what gives you maximum joy
We should look for an avenue that gives us the most joy while we are doing it, be it teaching, surgery, administration, research or patient care. At various stages in my life I have had the opportunity to
play these different parts. Interestingly I felt elated when I managed to align these roles to my desire to be a healer. It is difficult to find Joy in being a teacher if you are uncomfortable being with
young people or is a poor communicator. It is difficult to be happy in a sterile research laboratory if your desire is to interact with people. You can not be a paediatrician and dislike noisy children.
Look for avenues that will give you joy and fulfilment.
Ask and you will recieve, that your joy
may be full-John 16:24

Follow your dream
Each of us has dreams about life. Dreams, plans and ambition are necessary and very often they embody a desire that you want to achieve beyond reality and limitations. Dreams can inspire one to move beyond the ordinary and at times to something spectacular. Dreams inspire you into action, but
without action dreams will remain mere dreams. Several of my dreams have remained elusive, but many have been fulfilled. We must dare to dream and carry our dreams in our heart.
“And it shall come to pass afterward, that
I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and
your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
your old men shall dream dreams, your young
men shall see visions:”-Joel 2:28

by : Prof Dr George Mathew 
Samaritan First Edition on 2012

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