my recent post over at Austin Catholic New Media:
I recently had a conversation with a young friend at a party. Sitting at a table outside, sharing a tray of veggies and dip, I asked her about her plans after graduation. She told me that she wasn’t sure – she was looking at options, didn’t know if she could find a job she’d like, one that would be ‘right’ for her. As the sun set, several of us shared ideas and advice: resume writing pointers, interview tips, contacts for job recruiters, job-search websites, etc…. Finally, at one point she looked down at her hands folded in her lap and said in shocking sincerity, “Well, I think it really just comes down to the fact that I’m just afraid to be a grown-up. I’m just not sure I can do it.”
Ah, yes. “Afraid to be a grown-up.” At least she’s honest, right?
Some of us more seasoned folk might have words of advice for this young lady. “Well, buck up lassie, that’s what life is about!” Or, “Oh hun, you’ll be juuuuust fine. Just be sure you’re making a competitive salary, with a solid career track and great benefits. You know, my friend Sally’s daughter got a job in Houston and bought her own condo right after graduation.…” Or, “Eh, it doesn’t matter. Just go find something that pays the bills and get yourself through the day. Everyone hates work.”
Well, my dear. Here’s what I have to say to you, but I’m not sure it will help much:
I’m pretty much afraid of being a grown-up, too. And I’m 37.
I remember a moment in time, back when my oldest were very small – 2 years and 6 months or so. I was standing in my kitchen, staring at a pile of bills. My clothes disheveled, my children pleading for some lunch, and I thought, “What in the world does God think He’s DOING?! Why does he think I can handle all this? Because I can’t. I feel like I’m 17!”
All of us have a little wonderment in the back of our minds and hearts, sometimes a whisper, sometimes a scream: “I wonder if I had done this instead of that. I wonder if I had taken that job, moved to that town, married that guy, made that choice… What would have happened THEN, God?”
So, the real questions are these: How do we know if we’re doing the RIGHT thing? How do we know if our work is what God wants us to do with our lives?
When it comes to the bright future of any young person, all I can say is:
and don’t forget about my book giveaway: