Sunday, February 3, 2013

Potential

Meeting our full potential.  We focus alot on that.  Am I meeting my full potential?  How can I help my children to meet their full potential?  Or, in a tone of scorn, "S/he never met his/her full potential."

I get alot of questions about the kids' potential at Casa Hogar, the children's home.  We have kids with academic potential, (can anyone see a limit to Julio or Mirza's academic abilities?) artistic potential, musical potential, futbol potential, or gymnastics potential.  "Will [child] be able to reach his/her potential?"  "S/he would have so much more potential if s/he could come to the US." 

I have been pondering this idea of reaching one's full potential.  Career-wise, I didn't reach my full potential.  On purpose. Following my father's model who passed up Navy orders costing him a promotion to Admiral in order to spend more time with his family, I made choices that were career limiting so I could spend more time with my family.  The children in our ministry are unlikely to have the opportunities our US children have, thus will not reach that imagined potential.  What are they missing?  Did I make a mistake?  What exactly is one's full potential?

It seems that the worldly definition of potential is a difficult one to achieve and often fleeting.  A few get to be CEOs or President or wealthy beyond comprehension.  But, have even they reached their full, lasting potential?  I am reminded of a former CEO of IBM who went from being the most powerful business leader in the world to a pariah when IBM had its near death experience.  What was his potential?  Did he achieve it, then lose it?  We have all seen it -- fortunes lost, reputations ruined, jobs lost.

Instead, it seems clear to me that our full, lasting potential is found in the Risen Lord - to "walk in love as Christ loved us."  I haven't met my full potential yet...but I am ever hopeful.


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