Be Someone?

Posted: June 30, 2014 in World On The Edge

file000475070896Young people are often asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Many answer with a plan to follow in the footsteps of a person who is well-known –a popular singer or musician, a sports hero, a movie star, etc. As a general rule, when we’re young we say we want to Be Someone. Many times that means Someone Famous. These are the dreams of children, but often a child’s dream doesn’t come true.

These unattained dreams are what Robert Burns refers to in this line from his poem “To a Mouse:” “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft agley.” (The best laid schemes of mice and men / Often go awry.)

We can’t control everything in our lives, or everything about who we are, much as we’d like to think so. There is no fast car to take us to our dream–no free ride. But there is also no certainty that even if we have the talent, even if we put in the work, that we will obtain our dream of notoriety. There are many singers, musicians, athletes, and actors who are as talented and hard-working, or even more talented and hard-working, that those ones who actually become famous. So why don’t those talented people ‘make it?’

Let’s consider that ‘making it’ may not the reason God gives us talents. His plan is not one of ‘Mice and Men.’ It is far more reaching and complicated than that. We are advised by scripture to use our talents, not hide them; but that doesn’t mean God is ready with a contract in hand for a movie deal, a hit recording, or a football championship. God does not give us talents for our personal notoriety, though some may attain personal fame. But our talents–those things we love to do, or feel called to do–are given to us as personal expressions and as joyful gifts for reaching out to others.

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