Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Who are you becoming?

There is a junior high school right across the street from our house. (recently built, and frankly I wish it wasn't there by the way, but that is another story). I was driving by the school today, and I saw a bunch of kids standing around, waiting for their parents to pick them up. Every Wednesday they get out early, and if I leave at just the wrong time, I'm stuck in parental deadlock for a long time before I can even get around the block.

As I sat there, waiting, watching parents cut off other parents, honking horns at each other, picking up their loved ones, I started wondering what each of these kids would become someday. Would the red headed girl laughing with her friends become a business woman, running some kind of successful enterprise? Would the young man sitting off all by himself become the next Bill Gates and start a new technology empire? Would any of these kids end up crashing their lives on the rocks of bad relationships, substance abuse, and fade away before they ever got a chance to live? Would many of them just come out "normal" in society's eyes -- because that is the path of least resistance?

And then I thought about that phrase: "what would they become?" What a strange, permanent sort of phrase that is. As if we as human beings start out young, get educated, and then "become" whatever it is we are trying to be - doctors, lawyers, truck drivers, plumbers ... and then we're done. How tragic life would be if that were really the case. And what a tragedy it is for people who do stop growing, changing, and learning at some point. 

In life, either you're growing, or you're dying. Status quo is just another form of fading away, and waiting to die. 

My hope and prayer for all of the kids standing around, waiting for their parents to come pick them up, was that they would never "become" anything. That they would never cease "becoming" who they are -- life is a journey of becoming, drawing closer to family, friends, and God, or moving away. The choices that we make every day, the plodding commute to work and back, the words we exchange in anger or in love -- they are either part of becoming something more beautiful, or becoming something less beautiful. 

Who are you becoming?


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