my calling :: finding and pursuing

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sunset at cedarville university where i study nursing


// well done, good and faithful servant || [ matt. 25:23 ]

For the end of my high school graduation speech I wrote the following:

“If you know truth, cling to it and proclaim it; yet do so in all graciousness and humility.

If you aspire to be great, realize greatness does not come on your own accord but from giving all glory to God.

If you desire to see change in the world, think critically, communicate truth, and act with tenacity and passion.

If you want to find your calling or purpose in life, know that Christ commands you to “Love one another.”

Live in such away and set your goals to such a standard that the Creator will say to you: ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’”

At that particular time in my life, I thought I knew exactly what I wanted to do after college. With full assurance, I told everyone I met, “I’m going into Biology, Pre-Med because I want to study to become an M.D. or a Physician’s Assistant (P.A.).” To me, this was what I interpreted as God’s special calling for my life.

Back up a few years to early high school…and long story, short, I found myself in my optometrist’s office, post-hours, due to a complication with my contact lenses. While waiting, I picked up an issue of TIME magazine and read the story of Bibi Aisha—a young Afghan woman who faced mutilation from her own family and family-in-law, due to running away from an abusive home. From this moving piece, I deduced that God had placed a calling on my head to become a doctor in order to treat women such as Bibi, whose cultural standards limited the prevalence of female physicians.

I had it all planned out. I would finish my Biology, B.S. degree, attend medical school, practice for a few years in the U.S., and then move overseas where I’d become a sort of “missionary-in-disguise M.D.” The plan sounded great in my head and sounded even better when I shared it aloud to practically everyone who stumbled across my path.

Funny thing though when plans never go as planned. I started my first year in college as a Bio Major with enthusiasm, but not much dedication. All too quickly, I found myself completely disillusioned and entirely unhappy. Why is God not blessing me with good grades? I’m following His Will, I thought in a rather deflated way.

So…I switched my major to Nursing. And, I hated it. That first semester of Nursing School made me even more frustrated that I’d “failed” at my original dream. Everyone is thinking, “Oh, look at her. She had to choose an easier major because she’s not smart enough to become a doctor.”

Then, God started convicting me: Your heart is full of pride. Who gave you that desire to help others in the first place? What makes you think you can be the hero?

Friend, your calling is not to become a playwright, a surgeon, a computer engineer, a travel agent, a soldier, a doctor, a nurse, or any other “job.” Your calling is to become a servant. You don’t have to exhaustively search or experience a life crisis to find your calling. You already have it and you already know it—pursue it!

If you read my bio, you know I’m still in nursing school. The only thing that’s changed is that I absolutely love it (and it’s most certainly not an “easier” major)! Do I still want to become a doctor? Yes! (A Doctor of Nursing Practice sounds good, hmm…) Do I still want to work overseas and advocate for young women in underrepresented areas? Yes! The bones of the dream did not change; the motivation and the passion changed. Fall humbly before the Lord and offer up your goals to Him in complete submission. Watch Him work, because He will.

[ au revoir, hannah ]



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