I know sometimes it's scary to think that you might do the wrong thing. It's terrifying to imagine wasting your "one shot." But let me assure you, nothing you do will be wasted. Every decision you make, every path you take, has the ability to contribute something you need to succeed at your dream. (From p.81 of Quitter by Jon Acuff)During my last year in grad school, I took a paid internship to learn how to put into practice what I had been studying in the classroom for the previous two years. I did a few projects, but mostly, I got paid to sit and do homework because they didn't have that much work for an intern to do. And while I was grateful for the money, I concluded that it had been a waste of a year of my time.
Three years later, I quit the job that I had gone to grad school for and began looking for a contract position. I applied with several temp companies and was offered contract work with a firm in Dallas. After a few weeks on the job, I was talking with my supervisor about grad school because we had attended the same one. During that conversation, he shared that he had hired me because of the internship that I had done in grad school; he said that he had completed an internship there and knew that I must be "okay" if they had hired me.
I often think that I am not using my time wisely - that maybe there's something else that the Lord wants me to do or that maybe I'm not making the best use of the gifts and talents that He has given me. And yet, I go back to the above scenario and see how God can (and does) use the most unlikely experiences in the past to equip us for the future.
I have to remind myself that when I gave my life to Him, I gave Him the use of all of my time - that same time that He holds from beginning to end as the Alpha and the Omega - and sometimes He ordains that time to be used in what appears to be a mundane way. But just because it feels mundane doesn't mean that it can't be used.
As I think about that, it compels me to pray that I wouldn't miss what He has for me right now. That He would enable me to grasp the lessons that I need to learn from today in order to thrive in the future. And that He would redeem the time that it feels like the locusts have eaten. (Joel 2:25)
May the Lord remind each of us that not one experience is wasted or cannot be redeemed.