In my last blogpost I shared about one of the secrets to Joy. It is inherently connected to childlikeness and trust. Today I want to shed light on another factor that influences our joy barometer in everyday life. And that has all to do with finding and walking out your way. Let me explain in more detail what that means.
Many people will know this familiar proverb: “Train a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he not depart from it.” However, a lot of parents have applied this proverb in raising their children the way they want them to go, and our educational system has added its share by imposing a way every child ‘should’ go and perform. It has mass-produced little robots that can perform a range of set tasks. That’s the reality we live in and most of us have grown up under.
The original proverb, however, says this: “Train a child according to his way; even when he grows old, he will not turn away from it.” (Prov. 22:6) So what is the difference between how the proverb has been applied in our Western culture and between what it actually really means?
The Hebrew proverb advocates to train a child in his way: in his unique disposition, giftings, talents, interests, natural tendencies and passions, and once a child is fostered in his areas of natural strengths, he will grow into a stable person that knows and pursues his way. When you find and pursue your way, you will find meaning, purpose and a deep contentment and joy in life.
Unfortunately, for many of us, a set way has been imposed on us, and more often than not, that way does not correspond with our unique inherent design.
As a result, many of us are plagued by self-doubt and tossed back and forth in the valley of decision-making regarding which way to choose for our future. We are looking for guidance from the outside because we so desperately want to fit in, but we never really have the feeling we find our place in this world.
Many of us live the script that was imposed on us from the outside instead of being connected to our own uniqueness, passions, talents and propensities inside. When that is the case, you will find little to no joy in everyday life. You will drag yourself through yet another day, trying to meet the demands of that day and mainly experience life wearing out on you.
But even if you were bent to other people’s expectations so that your natural propensities have been covered up by external demands, it is not too late to find back your way, because you were born with a unique treasure inside of you, and it is waiting to be discovered and to be released into this world.
UNCOVERING YOUR TREASURE
Knowing your passion, talents, and giftings is important to find joy and meaning in everyday life. If you live a life outside of what corresponds with your unique design, and if you live a life doing what is required of you instead of what you were wired to do, you will either try to find unhealthy pseudo-comforts that distract you from the searing pain that you don’t live life fully (think of entertainment, partying, having an affair, substance abuse and more), or wariness and resignation will settle in.
Author and speaker Les Brown says, “Most people die when they are 25, but they don’t get buried until they are 65!” One of the indications that something inside of you is buried alive is that you stop dreaming, you stop seeing possibilities, you have no desire to advance and grow, and you do what you do with weariness, indifference, or even disdain.
But you were created to dream and you were created to live your life to the fullest – and a key to experiencing joy and fulfillment is in finding your way – that what you are ‘wired’ to do.
If you were trained in someone else’s way, in society’s way, in the church’s code of conduct way, or your parent’s expectation way – you can still find back your own way, because as long as you have breath, that uniqueness, passion, talent and gifting is alive and it is waiting to be discovered and to be released. It might just take some digging and clearing out rubble to uncover that treasure you carry inside.
Ask yourself today where you live other people’s script and expectations. Take time to connect with the treasure you carry inside of you and find a starting point where you can release that treasure.
If you are looking for more hands-on tips on how to uncover this treasure, check out my free Ebook “Seven Keys To Abundant Living” here.