Updated: Apr 25, 2019
When I was a kid, I remember completing puzzles of numbered dots. All I needed to do was follow the given sequence, connect the dots, and voila! The outline of an object would be revealed. I don’t remember what my younger self felt when I completed those games. But now, as an adult, I long for that clarity and wish that connecting the dots in life could be just as clear.
As an ex-teacher who taught for 9 years, I’ve grown used to giving the instructions and asking the questions. Yet the big questions affect us all. I couldn’t escape the perennial question that weighed in my heart - what is my purpose in life and how I do live it out? So despite the security of a stable job and the comfort of a community l loved, I decided to leave. Here, I find myself moving between excitement and anxiety. I feel like an ancient traveller trying to pick out the constellations from a flood of stars.
This is a season of exploration for me, a time to gain new experiences and greater self-awareness. But it’s also an opportunity to ask questions that will help others make meaning in their lives - those questions that challenge, motivate, and direct. A question necessitates a response, and even the reluctance to answer can reveal more than we wish to admit. And so the right questions need to be asked, the ones that reveal where the dots are supposed to be, even if one doesn’t know what the final image looks like.
Photo by Greg Rakozy
So under the night sky, I sit. I hope you will sit with me and with others on this journey. I hope we can ask the necessary questions together, the ones that may be difficult and challenging but will push us towards growth and action.
How do I live my life meaningfully?
What changes do I need to make?
Am I truly satisfied with how I’m living my life?
If no answers appear, take heart that the asking is, in itself, a step forward. The hardest questions are also the ones that will require time, commitment, and perseverance. There is great value in choosing to face these questions head-on than to live in oblivion or denial.
So let’s sit together in the discomfort of these questions. Our answers may be sketchy incomplete fragments but they’re already helping us to connect the dots together.