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Friday, 5 October 2012

What are You Looking For

I went back to university when I was 34 years old because I didn't really know what I wanted to be when I grew up. It wasn't until my late 20s that I began to think about going into ministry, and even then, I wasn't so sure that a pastor was who I really wanted to be. I had been in the navy for a while and then worked in a small bakery for 16 years but I kind of fell into these jobs, they were not jobs I had dreamt about doing when I was a child. Jesus' question in John 1:38, "What are you looking for?" would have been a hard question for me back then to really answer as I was, and still am, a dreamer kind of guy, always dreaming of what might be, not always focusing so well on what I should be doing. I think more in terms of who I should be instead of what I should be doing, and this always seems to change in different ways as I meet new people and experience new things.
There were times when what I was looking for was a more important job, more money, more vacation time, more stuff, more, more, but over the years my answer has changed. Now I find that I'm looking for meaning and purpose in my life, looking for ways to make a difference in the world, even if only in small ways, trying to figure out who I am and who I should be as a person and as a follower of Jesus. This is not just about spiritual stuff, it's about day to day real life stuff, about how to live and why. As I get to know Jesus more, I find myself beginning to look for ways to do with less and give away more, whether it's stuff or more of myself as a follower of Jesus, husband, father, grandfather, pastor and friend.
"What am I looking for?" This is question I find myself thinking about more often and am learning that what I say I'm looking for reflects who I am and how my relationship with Jesus and others is. What I am looking for determines how I spend my time and who I spend my time with. The disciples weren't sure how to answer Jesus so Jesus invited them to come and follow him, to spend time with him. Over time they began to see that what they were looking for was Jesus, an answer that is growing more central in my own life too. So what are you looking for?