There is something inside of you that is unique to you. A burning passion that fuels you to tirelessly work towards a cause that oftentimes, others don't understand. That cause, no matter what it is - is your purpose, or at least it is directly connected to it.
I've always known that I wanted to teach, but that wasn't my purpose. I never became a teacher to "teach". I have been teaching for five years now and I know that while it is a passion that is connected to my purpose - teaching is not it. I have also been building websites since middle school and have gotten OK at it over the years - but while graphic design is also something that comes somewhat naturally to me, it is definitely not my purpose.
My purpose became clear to me when I walked into that shelter to spend my Spring Break as a junior at the University of South Florida. I traveled to D.C. with some of the most awesome people I have ever met, serving at America's largest homeless shelter (Creative Center for Non Violence) for a week. During that week, I met some of the nicest people that I've ever met in my life, but also one of the meanest.
Dave was the worst. One day while talking to the residents, I decided to pull up a chair and talk to Dave because he was sitting alone. Before I could fully scoot the chair into the table, Dave began yelling obscenities at the top of his lungs. "Get the **** away from me!!! Leave me the **** alone!!!" I was so embarrassed I just got up and walked away with no explanation, asking no questions.
At the end of each day, we would reflect on our day with our facilitator from the shelter. I was still a little shaken up by the incident but decided to ask, "Why is he so mean?" and the response I received has changed my entire life.
Dave was a college professor at Georgetown University. One day after leaving work, Dave came home just as he would any other day, but this day was much different. To his horror, as Dave pulled up to his home, it was burning down in flames.
Horrible, I know - but my cousins' house had also burned down and she wasn't that mean to me. Though horrible circumstances, it was an excuse that I couldn't complete accept. That was until I found out that Dave went in to the house to save to his family only to find them burned to death.
And just like that, I understood. That could be me. My father, my brother, anyone. Dave was an ordinary man who had been through some extraordinary circumstances that led him to a shelter and it was my duty to help in any way I could. So I did and I will. It's my purpose - to help. To find a need and find resources for people like Dave...
...people like me.
We're Blessed 2 be a blessing! Let's do it!