Every year my family goes to a special Christmas dinner. Before the meal, we make a toast to the next year. Typically, I look toward the year with anticipation and excitement, but this year my feelings during Christmas dinner took me a different direction.
My dad raised the glass to bless our next year with good intention, and when he toasted to my year, he said, “Cheers to Calah, and the next year of her…. finishing school.”
I heard this and instantly felt disappointment. Hearing it seemed so…boring and stagnant in comparison to friends of mine who were moving across the world and chartering some unknowns that required deep levels of trust.
I think we all crave adventures. Especially for Christians, there can be this sense of feeling like stepping into some great unknown territory is evidence of our obedience to God’s plans for us.
So for me, seasons of routine feel lacking. And I am also someone who gets bored with things easily. After four months of anything new, I am ready for a change in pace; so right now, as I am in the middle of a degree, I have already grown a little jaded. I’m ready to leave. However, I don’t feel ready to leave because I feel called to – I feel ready to leave solely because of what it feels like to be sitting in an in-between period. If anything, I feel the Lord calling me to stay because I know I need to learn how to stick something out, follow it all the way through, and the importance of preparation seasons.
One day the waiting was really hitting me as I got dinner with a friend who was preparing to move across the world for six months to a country where she didn’t know anyone. She shared about her fears, and I shared about my discontentment. Then, she said some words I have carried with me through the days where I have grown discouraged and if I am honest, ungrateful for my current season. She looked me in the eye and with so much grace and wisdom said:
“Calah, there is just as much risk in staying as there is in leaving.”
We often admire the people who have the bravery to jump into these daring lifestyles, but there is just as much courage in people who remain faithful and loyal to callings that don’t get an adrenaline rush every day because the Lord asks us to sit in both seasons of sowing and reaping.
So if you are sitting in that office cubicle with another dream stirring in your heart, I’m so proud of you; If you’ve tried to drop out of school several times, but know you’re supposed to be there, persevere – the Lord is doing something with that time. He is so proud of your faithfulness and your diligence to your work.
There is just as much risk in staying as there is in leaving.