Feelings of Ineffectiveness

Have you ever felt like this:

I am 39 years old. I am married to a wonderful woman that I love with all my heart. I have two pre-teen children that are brilliant and amazing and difficult all at the same time. I have a decent job, a mortgage that we were behind on but are finally catching up on. Some credit card debt and a couple of hundred bucks in the bank.

My wife doesn’t have lots of beautiful jewelry or beautiful clothes, my kids have enough clothes to get them through but lots of toys (at this point in their lives “toys” refers to xbox, computer, cell phone, etc… not exactly a tonka truck if you know what I mean). Our family vacation this year will probably involve visiting a brother-in-law for awhile.

Overall I have a good life but I feel like something is missing, like I should be farther along the road of life at this point. I still don’t know what I want to do with my life when I grow up. I want to take my wife on our honeymoon even though we’ve been married 15+ years (don’t ask it would take too long to explain), I want to take our kids on a real vacation and let them experience some of the finer things in life like I did when I was their age (thanks to my Mom & Dad).

I am about to turn 40 and while I was growing up I believe that I would either a) be dead or b) be rich by the time I was 40. Well guess what…neither has happened. I’m glad I’m not dead.

I don’t know what my life’s goal is, my purpose, my unique reason for being. I feel like I’m missing the reason that God put me on this earth. Why am I here? What am I supposed to do with my life? What career is THE career for me? Am I meant to be rich? poor? Somewhere in-between?

Does any of that ring true to you? Do you ever feel a hole in your life?

So how do we fill that void, that gap in our lives between what we have and what we want?

I have done lots and lots of reading, praying and asking questions in my life in an effort to figure out that answer and I’ve come up with two potential answers:

1. Keep going and keep trying new things. Eventually I believe that I will find the right fit, the right thing for my life but only if I keep my mind open and keep learning new things.
2. Get on my knees more. I believe that God has a plan for my life and that by praying more and by believing in him and giving him control of my life I will be doing what I am supposed to be doing when I am supposed to do it.

Do those two things mean that I will have the answer to that void right this very instant? NO, unfortunately it doesn’t but I do believe that it means I will find the right path and the right things in my life when I am supposed to find them.

Will my beliefs and actions mean less frustration, anger and suffering? Again NO, if anything it means more of all of them because I am constantly trying to improve myself and go against the tide. Anytime you go against the tide, against what the “mainstream” is doing you get more anger, frustration and suffering in the short-term because other people don’t like it at some conscious or unconscious level. But…

I am not in this for the short-term, I am in it for the long-term!

I want people to remember me for the positive effect I had on their lives, starting with my wife, my children and my family. I want to leave this world better than I found it and if that means I have to struggle against the tide for my entire life well then so be it!

I am stubborn and God willing I will make that positive impact. If I don’t it won’t be for a lack of trying!

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