The Myth of Your “Calling” in Life
Our culture has confused people, and continues to do so, in this regard. For example, what young person does not grow up expecting that there is something special they are here to do and that their greatest life challenge, or test, is to figure out what that "something" is and pursue it? In most instances, this cultural conditioning only serves only to set up the young person for what will likely be a life of confusion and disappointment.
It is this kind of erroneous conditioning that leads virtually everyone to spend an inordinate amount of time looking for the "right" job, or career, or calling. While most people will eventually choose a career that rewards them with some measure of satisfaction, the fact is, no one ever finds a job or a calling that meets their deepest longing for fulfillment, joy, and happiness.
Why? It is because your deepest desires for happiness could only ever be the consequence of something altogether different.
So, what is that "something that is altogether different?" What will reward me with the deepest satisfaction, happiness, fulfillment, and joy in life?
In the book, The Enoch Factor: The Sacred Art of Knowing God, there is a question that both opens and closes the book. In that one question is the answer to this question of our deepest desires. Here is the question: "You were born to walk with God, so why would you walk alone?" In between this question are 250-plus pages of a cornucopia of sacred insights into the mysteries of life's purpose or meaning. Although the author of The Enoch Factor is a Christian, he unapologetically draws on spiritual teachings from a variety of religious traditions, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and so forth. He demonstrates that in all of these religions, you find the central, overriding truth that your primary purpose in life--that is, the real meaning of human existence--is to both know and to enjoy intimacy with the Creator, no matter how you may understand or conceptualize this Transcendence. As it was with Enoch, the mythic mystic out of Jewish folklore, "You are born to walk with God; so why would you walk alone?"
"All religions," said the Hindu yogi, Parmahansa Yogananda, "serve the purpose of reuniting the soul with God." Saint Augustine shared the same essential truth: "Our hearts are restless until they find rest in God." What most religions forget, including Christianity, and our culture does not know and so fails to teach, is that there could only ever be one real purpose to human existence--one real meaning for your presence on planet earth--and that is to "know thyself," as Socrates put it. When you know yourself, you've met your Source. Meister Eckhart put it like this: "The eye through which I see God is the same eye through which God sees me."
How is this so? Since you were created in the imago dei, the image of God, you are part of God. That means, the Source out of which you emerge is the same Source to which you will return. What made Jesus, and other spiritual avatars like him so unusual--people like the Buddha, Muhammad, Enoch, Mary, the mother of Jesus, and so on, is that they simply lived at a level of God-realization few people have ever experienced, either before or after them. And yet, all of them invite their followers to live as they lived. Why would they invite people to live similarly if it was not possible for them to do so? But, of course, they would not. It is possible. Since they lived so remarkably in touch with self and Source, so may we.
This writer grew up being taught by well-meaning, but misguided parents and other Christian people, that there was a "calling" I was to both hear and then pursue in life and, if I did, I would discover a happy, fulfilling life. But, in the end, the promise turned out to be a disappointment to me, just as it must be for virtually everyone else. What I now know is that there is no special vocation you're supposed to find and pursue, as in a career or calling; but, instead, your real vocation is simply, to know God. When you do, there is joy unspeakable and there is inexplicable satisfaction.
The philosopher Teilhard de Chardin once said that we are spiritual beings having a temporary human experience. If this is true, when you reconnect with your spiritual self (or, Source), you make the remarkable discovery that what you do professionally is secondary to who you are. Your real identity could never be what you do but only ever who you are. And, therein lies the difference. Whether you wash windows, drive a cab, work on a farmer, serve tables in a restaurant, or act as the President and CEO of a Fortune 500 company, none of this, in the final analysis, is either that important or significant. They are all just roles, transitory in nature, and none of them, no matter how our culture may regard them, could ever give you what you either want or need in life, except in some relative, temporary sense.
So then, your real purpose is to walk with God. And, because this is so, then the second part of that question becomes all the more significant. Since my purpose is to walk with God, "Why would I walk alone?"
Well, the fact is, no one chooses to walk alone, yet most people do. They do precisely because they don't know how to walk with God.

Author's Bio: 

Steve McSwain is the author of three books. His two most recent are The Giving Myths: Giving then Getting the Life You’ve Always Wanted and The Enoch Factor: The Sacred Art of Knowing God. Dr. McSwain holds a doctorate in Christian ministry and served as a pastor for more than two decades. For the last fifteen years, he has consulted with religious leaders and congregations within virtually every branch of the Church—Catholic, Evangelical, and Protestant alike. Today, he continues his consultative work, while maintaining a writing and speaking career at churches, conventions, and corporate events nationwide.