SummaryA vanity license plate put it into focus. Answers to life questions suddenly clicked. It was as if a ray shone from the heavens to spotlight the road ahead.
Many moons ago, in what seems like “a galaxy far, far away,” I set out from rural Virginia back to college to finish my final year.
I had begun my college journey with a great deal of optimism and enthusiasm—I was certain that I wanted to be a history teacher. I loved academics and was intoxicated by the idea of spending my life immersed in history books and retelling the world’s past.
I am happy to report that the thrill of creating, and adding to my personal library, and studying history, has never left. However, the summer
in between junior and senior years proved to be a game-changer for me. It was my first time on my own, and I had spent it working to support myself.
As I drove back to school on a crisp mid-August morning, I knew that the year ahead would be different than my previous years. I also knew that I now desired something different for my future. It was at that moment something both memorable and mundane occurred—and it was an event that I will never forget.
Message from the Passing Lane
Passing me in the left lane whizzed a car with a personalized license plate. Here in Virginia, it is not an uncommon feature. Every state has a motto, and I have often thought that Virginia’s could be “the land of the personalized license plates” since there seems to be a disproportionate amount of them compared to other states. Most of them are self-aggrandizing or contain some element of wit, much like a riddle.
I too am guilty of creating such license plates, to the extent that I have had people try to harangue me at 65 mph to find out what they mean. Yet the license plate that sped by in mid-August was a departure from the norm. It simply read “SERVE.”
I was stunned. Answers to life questions seemed to suddenly click for me. It was as if a ray shone from the heavens to spotlight the road ahead. Prayers I had made that summer for direction and what was next for me in my life, felt answered with this simple message. The smug thought also came to me that a person’s lame license plate was actually giving me life direction and purpose.
The Road Ahead
Be that as it may, my entire senior year, the idea of service permeated my mind. To my shock, I had senior-itis worse than anyone I had ever met. I was both restless and sad—restless to get busy with work outside of a classroom, and sad that I was not finding the joy I once found in academics. Not in a million years did I ever think I’d cross that threshold, but I did.
Fast forward to today, and the world at large finds itself self-reflecting on the value of education, college, and what matters in life. By being forced to slow down in the world of COVID lock-down, many individuals are taking the important step of reconsidering their assumptions and desires. Students are taking gap years, extending their senior year, and giving further consideration to their vocation. They are not rushing to college, but giving themselves more time to develop their knowledge base and experience while pondering their future. This is time well spent.
Time to Check Out Jobzology
At Seton, we support you in your vocational discernment, aspirations, and academic preparation. We encourage you to leverage any extra time to your advantage. And if you haven’t already, now would also be a good time to take advantage of Seton’s Jobzology questionnaire available through your MySeton page. The results will assist you with assessing your vocational direction.
Whatever path you choose, we at Seton pray that it will help provide you with a fulfilling future and will help glorify God’s kingdom.