In my most recent CPiC lecture I was asked to create a ‘three dimensional representation’ of where I would like to be in 5 years time, to look at my personal ambitions and how I can work on learning how to get there. This was my (rather crude) response:
We had the option to be as abstract or as cryptic as we desired, but I felt like it was pointless in my case, when where I want to be can be shown literally.
The first thing I made was a small replica of my church, the blue building in the centre of the picture, with the two pillars at the front that my dad calls ‘The Bean Cans’. To put it simply, in 5 years time I want to be in my church, but more than that I want to be stronger in my faith, walking in the path that God has for me, and serving in the house more, possibly in new ways. For me, this is my first priority in life, and where I put my focus because ultimately God and an eternal perspective are all that matter, and everything else is just extra richness and blessing in my life.
The next thing I made was the house and smaller studio to the right, with the two people sat outside (me and my boyfriend – I’m the one with the paintbrush). As spiritual as I just made myself seem, I am still the kind of person that seeks creature comforts and company. In 5 years time want to have my own home, in fact I pretty much expect to have taken that step, and if I can have a studio too that would be incredible. I have remained living at home for at least my first year in university, and so haven’t had that first step out into the world like most of my classmates will have, simply because I wanted to stay near church and family. It doesn’t have to be bought by me, I will happily rent for a while, but to have my own place that I can call home, rather than jumping between places and only coming back to where I currently live for very little of my time, would be a big step that I want to take soon. Even more than this, I want it to be a home that I can make and be proud of – not just a place I live, cold and empty like so many houses are now, lifted straight from a catalogue, but I want somewhere to furnish and make my own, put up art and photographs… make somewhere to live. And I want it to be with the man I’m with now, and I want us to be married – in that way I’m what would be considered traditional, and with my faith I believe it to be the right way, especially for me.
Thirdly, in the next 5 years I hope to become significantly more well-travelled than I currently am, having only a childhood trip to disney and a handful of school trips to my name – which is why I made the aeroplane. There are many, MANY places I want to visit, and hope I can tick off at least two of them in the next 5 years! I want to experience culture and history, so all of the places I want to visit are primarily cities, and I’m very much a museum and art gallery rather than beaches person. The first opportunity I hope to seize is a youth conference with my church in 2017 in Athens, but after that, who knows! Paris, Rome, Jerusalem, Toyko, Shanghai, New York, Chicago, Toronto… to name a few. I have very few concrete plans, but I hope to take all opportunities that come my way.
We were then asked to choose 5 words to sum up “what we want to be in 5 years time”, so here are my choices accompanied by brief explanations:
- Joyful – in everything I do, I want it to be in the joy of the Lord and to seek happiness and fulfilment. Even though I know it is sometimes necessary to do things we don’t enjoy or would rather avoid, but I mean that on the whole I want to have a content life, and have the right perspective.
- Faithful – faithful to God, but also faithful in the sense of being loyal and steadfast, both to myself in these personal ambitions, but also to my family and friends, so that I can always be a good friend and a strong support.
- Fruitful – I don’t want to find myself trapped in any situations that stifle me spiritually, artistically or emotionally. I always want to be creating, always progressing, and always seeing good come out of what I do – and if I don’t, I want to have the right attitude and the realisation to make a change.
- Strong – I feel this is important to help me achieve the previous three words. Without strength I won’t have the confidence or ability to make the other three happen, or to make a change and step out in faith when I need to. I’ve already become much stronger than I was a few years ago, and through God I hope to go from strength to strength, supported by friends and family around me who I can strengthen in return.
- Family – by this I mean both my related family and my spiritual family. I put family first by staying where I already lived for university, and family is one of the most important things to me. I often feel as though I don’t have enough time to spend with all the people I know and love, so in the next 5 years I hope to be an even more family-focussed person.