Thursday, July 29, 2010

Emerging Purpose

When I began my current job a little over ten years ago, it seemed as though it would be my job for life--and I liked that idea. When it became clear some five months ago now that it was not going to be my job for life, the world seemed to spin almost out of control for awhile. I have been told that I should not have been surprised by this turn of events, given my shortcomings in the job. Still, it was something of a surprise, and it brought on a confusion of direction and purpose that has lasted quite some time.

In the last two weeks I have had good friends suggest some things to me that have stewed and simmered in my heart, mind, and prayers. Out of this seems to be emerging a new purpose. It is not necessarily a sense of what I should be doing next, but more a sense of what I should not look to again. There are those that have suggested that I should apply for the opening that my departure will create, and for a few days I considered that. But what has emerged more clearly in the last two days is an understanding in my heart that I do not want to work for the people that determined that I should not be their leader anymore. Regardless of what I have done to improve myself, my knowledge, and my skills, there is no place in the organization for me anymore. Whether I work to the end of my extended contract or find other employment before then, my last day there will be my final day with the organization.

That understanding, that emerging purpose, is both liberating and grieving. It is liberating because of the burdens I have carried for ten years for the organization. However, it is a place where I have poured my heart and soul and 14 of my 40 years, so I grieve at the loss of my place in the organization. There is much work still to be done to make it a school of excellence in deed and not just in thought. May God provide the men and women needed to make it happen.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Searching for a Purpose

I think this is the fourth blog I've started. It always seems like a good idea when I start one, but somehow I lose my way, or lose steam, or lose purpose, after a handful of posts. I'm a man searching for a purpose, and for those of you that know me and know something of the search I am engaged in, I think this is the easier way to keep you all informed of my progress than by trying to remember each one's e-mail address.

I'm not searching for an eternal purpose or anything like that. I have that already. What I am looking for is what my temporal purpose should be. That is, what vocation should I be pursuing at this point in my life? The input I have received is immense. I'm still trying to sort it all out. What I know right now is that the school I interviewed with in mid-July would like to employ me, but cannot pay a high enough salary to make it happen, and the university for which I applied to be assistant director of admissions has chosen to go with someone else.

I haven't stopped looking, but I have nothing else to report on the job front. I'm still searching for a purpose.