Becoming Who You Are

There’s this ancient story about the renowned Jewish teacher, Rabbi Akiva. He was journeying back to his home when worsening weather conditions made it difficult to find the way. He knew one path would take him to a Roman garrison and the other path would take him to his residence. Uncertain of the way in the bad weather, Rabbi Akiva ventured on, desperate to get home. Eventually a voice called out to him: “Who are you, and why are you here?

Rabbi Akiva realized he had stumbled down the wrong path and was being greeted by a Roman guard. He answered the question with another question of his own: “How much do they pay you?” The Roman guard was perplexed, but after several emphatic repetitions of their respective questions the guard answered the Rabbi: “Five drachmas a week.” To which Rabbi Akiva answered: “I will pay you twice that amount, if you will come back with me and ask me every morning: ‘Who are you, and why are you here?’”

Who am I, and why am I here? It’s a question we ask ourselves over and over again in the course of our lives. Whether thinking about pursuing higher education, marriage, more meaningful friendships, raising children, a change in jobs, an area of service within the community, a passion to cultivate, a talent to develop, or a dream to follow, Christ-followers have believed God has plans for us. It is easy to get caught up in the frantic, busy, and upwardly mobile pace of life. We might miss out on the journey of becoming who we are in Jesus Christ.

As we begin the summer, we celebrate with our students and their families who underwent graduation from various institutions of higher learning. We will have three fun and formative Date Nights this summer to help couples strengthen their marriages. Finally, we will launch Callings, a seven-week Tuesday noon Young Adult Summer Lunch Group, exploring the intersection of every person’s calling and their vocation. My prayer is through Bible studies, vacation, small groups, special workshops, and the daily journey we will all take more steps into becoming who we are in Jesus Christ!