Rachel’s Story: Purpose in Vocation

I’ve been working with Jon on and off for four years and it’s without a doubt one of the best investments I’ve made in my life.

When I started with him, I just thought I needed a new job. But, honestly, I needed a new approach to life. At the time I was jumping from one job to another hoping and praying one would ‘stick.’ So when I found out about Jon’s work, I decided to see what it meant to ‘transition well’ – what did I have to lose?

Working with Jon was an investment I chose to make. And not just a financial one. It was an investment in vulnerability, time, creativity and yes, financially too. But those all culminated in one big investment: an investment in myself. And that was priceless.

Within the first few meetings with Jon, we discovered that my corporate job was the exact opposite of my personality. I thrive on community, relationship building, and hospitality, and I was in a corporate soul-sucking environment that did not foster any growth in those areas. If I continued to do it alone, I’d have a resume the length of my arm and a nice paycheck, but no true purpose.

Through our time together, and the exercises Jon gave me, I slowly discovered myself and where God had specifically gifted me. Jon pushed me to discover the true side of myself. My dreams weren’t laughed off, but instead my wonderment was encouraged and my uncertainty was thoughtfully investigated.

My journey with Jon helped me fulfill my dream of living abroad. I quit the corporate world and went out on my own. As a freelance writer and professional resume writer, I’ve been able to be a digital nomad and work from various countries throughout the world. I can fully say 100% that without my work with Jon, I would not have had the guts to do move overseas. I would have continued to push down that dream, just telling myself it wasn’t practical. That it was silly.

But Jon taught me that pushing down my dreams isn’t practical either — they’re a part of who I am and to say no for too long is draining and debilitating.

Even now, as I approach a move back to the States, I value the work I’ve done (and continue to do) with Jon – he pushes me to stop and think about what I’m going through rather than rush into rash decisions that I may regret later. He lets me (forces me) to ‘sit with it’ for a while. And when it comes to transition, sitting with it can be one of the best things I can do.

All of this is to say that Jon is incredible in his work. By allowing him to lead me through this journey, my life is forever changed. I know that sounds super dramatic, but I fully mean it — he pushed me in ways I couldn’t have imagined. He was open and honest and expected the same of me. I encourage anyone who’s asking the tough questions but never really finding the answers to seriously consider the work of Liminal Space. It’s an investment in many ways, but ultimately it’ll be a priceless experience that will change the way you look at yourself, the world, and your Creator.

Jon is truly using his God-given gifts to help other find theirs.

Surprised by Student Debt

My time as a college student ended about three weeks before I walked at graduation. It happened at the ‘managing your student debt’ seminar my school put on for all of its graduating seniors. I had signed the loan agreements about four years prior, not really understanding what I was committing to. The people running the seminar put up a graph reflecting how much you borrowed alongside how long it would likely take to pay off. I remember wanting to ask if they had a graph that might help someone who owed four times what their maximum amount was. I called my parents and processed the shock. The reality of my newly-discovered debt obligations weighed heavily on me as I graduated and for the ensuing months and years.

This is my “next”???

Going to college was just the next life step for me after high school. Entering the work force and starting a career was supposed to follow immediately after. I assumed that college was going to leave me with a clear sense of calling and vocation, I ended up feeling extremely frustrated that I didn’t have anything I felt passionate about diving into. I felt further frustrated that I didn’t seem to be making any progress towards starting a career, particularly one that would meet my debt obligations.

“I can’t believe how this is going!”

I spent my first couple years out of college being frustrated that it didn’t look anything like what I had anticipated. I realize now that these first couple years were possibly more formative and facilitated more growth than any of my time actually in college had. I was so disillusioned with what my first experiences in the “real world” looked like that it took a long time to appreciate the great opportunities that have been presented to me. The biggest piece of advice I can offer is to not hold too tightly onto your expectation for what your story is supposed to look like, and to not feel too constrained by the pressures you feel for your story to pan out a certain way. I spent way too much time concerned with how I was going to pay my debt, and how what I was doing didn’t line up with mine and other’s expectations.

It’s a journey.  Be patient as the story is written.

I would encourage you to be as open-minded in thinking about this new life chapter as you were when you entered college. You’ll never stop being educated, and you’ll never stop honing and discovering your passions, gifts, and callings. Be open to what you learn about yourself, and don’t become discouraged if you aren’t immediately immersed in your life-long vocation. It’s a story, and it’s still being written.

*Justin graduated from Seattle Pacific University a few years ago.  Justin now serves as a firefighter for the city of Seattle.  working at Two Beers Brewing Company as a brewer for several years.

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