I’m a sucker for a good story.
To Kill a Mockingbird. The Harry Potter Series. Shawshank Redemption. Gladiator. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (and Huckleberry Finn). The Great Gatsby. Kill Bill. Whiplash.
They’re all classics in my mind…and some of the greatest stories ever told.
However, one thing always bugs me about every single one of them. They end.
Like I said, I love a good story. But, when they end, I’m always left wanting more, needing to know what happens next. Seriously, I can’t be the only one who wonders what happens to Harry Potter and Co. after they stop the magical apocalypse. Sidenote: I don’t count that crappy epilogue that even the author hated.
Ironically, I find myself at the end of a magical apocalypse. Okay, not really. But I do find myself at the end of one book in life.
I say book, not chapter, because I’m finally done with my education (for the foreseeable future). I’ve thought about law school and pursuing a Ph. D., but then I researched how much they cost, then gave up on those dreams pretty quickly.
Instead, I find myself a Master of Missiology and Bachelor in Communication and wondering…what’s next? My story seems to just be beginning.
The thought terrifies me. I can’t skip ahead and read the end, knowing what to do, where to go, what job to have, or what dreams to pursue.
Instead, I’m overwhelmed with the options.
I could pursue church ministry, but I don’t know if that’s the plan God has for me.
I could stay in my job now, but I don’t know if that’s the plan God has for me.
I could move back to NC, but I don’t know if that’s the plan God has for me.
I could move overseas and be a missionary, but I don’t know if that’s the plan God has for me.
I could write a book, but I don’t know if that’s the plan God has for me…nor do I have the patience.
I could start a business, but I don’t know if that’s the plan God has for me.
I could pursue my JD or PhD, but I don’t know if that’s the plan God has for me.
I’ve seriously thought about all of them, but obviously, I have no idea what’s next. And that’s terrifying.
I’ve always been able to rely on one thing: there’s more education. I knew for years I was called to seminary. But, now I’m done with it and cannot help but wonder what the future holds.
I could spout out cheesy sayings like, I don’t know what the future holds, but I know Who holds the future. Or God’s timing is perfect. Or patience is a virtue. Blah. Blah. Blah.
I’ve never been a virtuous person. Don’t get me wrong, I do believe all of those things. I just don’t want to hear them.
A lot of people have asked me what’s next or what now. The honest answer is I have no idea.
I can rest in knowing that I was faithful to my call to seminary, and can have hope in knowing that I feel like God is at work and doing something. I just don’t know what it is yet.
All I know is that God has called me, and you, to join him in the greatest story ever told. We have the opportunity to be the leading cast in accomplishing Kingdom sized things.
While I don’t know specifically what’s in store for my future, I know that God has created me for His purpose, and my God doesn’t do things without reason.
I know I’m not the only person in a period of waiting. Perhaps there are those waiting to conceive a child, to break an addiction, to figure out their next job, to reconcile a broken relationship, to find a spouse, to buy a house, to graduate, to see what’s next in life, or to overcome cancer.
Waiting on what’s next isn’t always fun or easy, but I know that our God is sovereign, and that He is at work. I know that He has something in store for me. And you.
Until I figure out what that is, “I will wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in His word I put my hope. I wait for the Lord, more than the watchmen wait for morning, more than the watchmen wait for the morning. ” (Ps 130:5-6)
I’ll also keep reading and devouring every story I can, knowing that God is still at work on what’s next in my story.