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Finding Your Calling as an Artist

Peter Pan is a Bad Role Model

Did Peter Pan have a calling? We’ll never know. He refused to grow up. As artists or creative professionals, we all need to keep our childlike sense of imagination and play like Peter Pan. However, we cannot afford to remain children. We must grow up and become that man or woman God has called us to be. Picasso put it this way, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”

The problem with growing up, or “adulting” as we now call it, is that you have to venture into the world, try to make a difference, take risks, live with your mistakes, and keep trying. Some people never learn to see beyond their own selfish desires.

The deeper problem with Peter Pan Syndrome is that you never contribute to your family, your industry, or your society and you never live a life worth living. The reason people don’t grow up, or resist ‘adulting’ is because they don’t know who they are, and they fail to pay attention to their inner longing for purpose.

Is Seth Godin Right?

Seth Godin is one great blogger, entrepreneur and motivational speaker who says in an interview “I’m not sure anyone has a calling” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3xJ1Msbx30 watch at about minute 4). It struck me because he is well intended in offering a butt-kicking exhortation to take action and not use your lack of understanding of your calling as an excuse. The reality is he doesn’t’ understand calling. Seth Godin is a genius in many areas, and if you need a marketing guru you should follow him. However, as an atheist, Godin is out of his field of expertise when it comes to calling.

And yet, I agree with Seth in one sense. If you are using the idea of, ‘finding your calling’ as an excuse to put off making decisions or committing to anything until you get some divine voice from God mapping out every step of your journey, you will never get off your butt. We live in a fallen world, right? And because of that, you won’t find perfect planning, free of mistakes and anxiety until you get to heaven. There is no panacea to the struggles  and the challenges in everyone’s life and career. Now think of Moses. If you could talk to Moses today, he would tell you – it didn’t make life easier with God speaking to him DIRECTLY from a burning bush. His life in leadership began with antagonizing a bitter, angry Pharaoh, and ended with grumbling followers, and decades wandering in the desert. God used him powerfully, and blessed his descendants, but it was no walk in the park.

Calling is a Spiritually Robust Notion

What we need is a much deeper, more spiritually robust idea of calling. If all you are looking for is the answer to which project to pursue, or which city to live in, it is like trying to find something stable on the third floor before you stop to build your foundation. You may find helpful hints, but the lack of foundation to build upon leaves your conclusions unstable and ready to crumble.

True freedom and joy is found in something more robust. Your biblical sense of calling is much deeper than just your occupation, vocation, or dreams. It goes to the heart of who you are. It deals with your emotions, and your spiritual life, as well as your daily opportunities. If you are going to weather the storms of life, your sense of calling must have the strength and resilience to make it to through your entire journey.

Trying to find an answer for the practical need of the day, without dealing with your heart is just foolish. You are a whole being, designed by God and your whole being needs to be addressed holistically.

Many people don’t know their full calling. All they know is they aren’t fully walking in confidence in how God made them. And yet, Christ died to set you free! Free from anxiety, free from fear, and free from aimless wandering.

If you want to understand your calling on a deeper level, that will address you heart as well as your artistic passions and creative opportunities, stay tuned for more . . .

And feel free to leave comments or questions you have about calling.

Copyright © 2019 Joel & Michelle Pelsue. All Rights Reserved. Used with Permission.

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