Saturday, 21 November 2015

Abide in your Calling...Stay on your Lane

Let every man abide in the calling wherein he is called... - 1 Cor. 7:20, 2 Cor. 10:12

One particular event I love watching during the Olympics is the hurdles. I particularly love it because each competitor is assigned a lane and expected to maintain focus by staying on that lane and veering off means DISQUALIFICATION!
In life, every man is in a race… but not against peers. Every man has a race set before him. Those running same race (thesame Vocation/Career/Business) still have different lanes which brings it down to the barest individuality. A lot of people have seen life as a competition and I think our parents, teachers and society should take a chunk of the blame.

Education (School) has always been a platform to train your mind to be fit enough to handle life’s challenges, hence the Algebra, Geometry, History, Geography, Calculus, etc. However, the concept of prize-giving-days at end of sessions and “Best Student” nomenclatures has watered the ideology of Schooling. Many young lads now see life as a competition making it increasingly hard to stay on their lane. A huge percentage of people are now running another man’s race, thereby getting farther from fulfillment.
Prize-giving ceremonies do two unhealthy things to students:
1.     Enhances competition to be the better student thereby paying less attention to individual lane and race
2.     Causes dejection, depression and seeing yourself as a no-brainer hence not created to make the most of life (afterall, all fingers are not equal, they say).

Don’t get me wrong, I’m ALWAYS a prize winner at every prize-giving day, I was so blessed my parents don’t check my “report-card” except to see how much they are to pay for the next session, so my phobia for it is not because I don’t win, but because of the damage it does to peers.
I’ve been a victim too early in life, as I saw that “first” position as my birthright and therefore my classmates as competitors. It got so bad that in JSS2, I concluded I was going to be an Aeronautic Engineer all because the other guy leading the other class (JSS2A & JSSB) claimed that was his Career path. Whatever Aeronautic Engineering meant then, I knew not. I just saw it as the peak of our competition…except ofcourse when he ventured into Commercial class in SS1.

In modern days, in classrooms, place of work, the competition is very much alarming. Mr A just bought a Car, I must buy mine. Mr C has enrolled for a professional Exam, that’s my next move too. Until you know what you are created for, until you discover vision, life is yet to start for you. Life is a race at different pace for each individual. Don’t jump lanes and end up disqualified or being ejected prematurely from the race. A wise man once said, “Every man was born to exist, Living begins at the discovery of Vision irrespective of Age, Color or Background!”

My father is an Architect; I must become an Architect to run the family business. There are 12 Lawyers in my family; I’m going to be a SAN. Is that your lane? Is that your Vision?
It became much more pronounced to me in my 2nd year in the University in 2009. Computer Science is a very vast field and there are over 20 career paths in it. As the career paths were being unfolded to us, semester-by-semester, I began finding my bearing and channeling my path towards fulfillment. I knew Computer Science was not my end, but a means to an end for me, I followed on my lane doggedly. There were discouragements and interferences, but staying on my lane has been one thing I consciously do.
True Success begins when you accede to the fact that you’re not in a race against anyone (friends, colleagues, classmates, etc)…but against Time!
Let me just send out a plea to Parents, Teachers and Society…encourage and nurture potentials in those juveniles thrown into your custody and not to create an unhealthy competition between them. That competition mentality derails destiny faster than anything else…especially in a canny way.
As parents, we are Caretakers and not Life-controllers of our children. We’re meant to help them discover and nurture purpose and vision. Sports, Business, Academics, Art, Music, Industry, Health, Law, Oil & Gas, etc are just several areas in which that little one in your care might be created for. School should help train your mind in discovering and driving towards fulfillment in pursuit of Vision, veering off that lane is tantamount to running someone else’s race and living another person’s life eroding fulfillment and destiny.

While it is a good thing to reward diligence in students, it will be advisable to help discover, understand and nurture potentials in others especially at the very young and tender age.

Our world will be a better place when everyone stays on their lane and run their own race. Remember, true fulfillment is in walking or running or flying on your lane.