A beautiful woman that I know and respect has an incredible voice—the kind that arouses a deep misty-eyed emotional response. For a long time, though she knew singing was her calling, she faltered because of self-doubt. Her devotion to her craft wavered.
But in the past year, her growth has been immeasurable. She let go of that which held her back and renewed her devotion to her incredible talent. She walked through fear and pursued her passion. Her calling—singing—called within her in a way that she could not resist. Now, her career is flourishing. She’s been blessed time and again with another venue to share her gift, and I can attest to the fact that the world is a better place because of her gift.
After the braces were removed, he attempted every Olympic sport available, and he wasn’t good at any of them—until he found snow skiing. He thought he’d compete as a skier, but the British Olympic committee wouldn’t let him compete because he was “different.” Because of his devotion to skiing though, he didn’t give up. Without giving the rest of the movie away, Eddie, showed a dedication—devotion—to his dream so strong that nothing was able to stop him.
What I learned though these two examples, and from some personal experience with devotion—is that we are not called so strongly to certain endeavors for nothing. It’s our devotion to that which calls us that keeps us going when the outcome looks bleak. I learned through these two examples that rarely do things turn out the way we think they will. Even if we make it to our destiny, the journey never looks like it does in our heads. Oftentimes we allow the picture of what’s in our head to derail our progress, rather than allowing our devotion lead us.
Eddie, for example, only knew he wanted to be an Olympian. He tried all the sports in the summer Olympics, but none worked out. Still, he wanted to be Olympian. He moved onto the winter Olympics. He found a sport that worked for him, but that still wasn’t his path to the Olympics. He refused to give up and pursued another route, and then another, until he made it to the Olympics. His trajectory was anything but linear, but his devotion kept his dream in tack.
Devotion keeps us on track. I find it one of the most useful Virtues I have. Though it’s important to keep in mind that devotion keeps our path ablaze, but doesn’t dictate what that path looks like.
How had Devotion influenced the trajectory of your life, of how you make decisions? Has it helped you follow your passions?