Do What You Love (At All Costs)

21 01 2012

When I first moved away from home, out on my own, I was 18 years old.  I had graduated from high school about a month and a half earlier.  I moved 100 miles away from my family to Lansing, Michigan—home of Oldsmobile and the state’s capitol.  Got a job and place of my own.  Ready to fly.

I worked in a donut bakery for the year and a half I lived in Lansing.  Our store stocked many of the Oldsmobile factories in and around Lansing.  Many of our walk-in customers were Olds employees.  It was a GM town, not unlike Flint or Detroit.

In those days, a job with General Motors set you up for life.  Great wage and benefits.  Nice pension upon retirement.  It was and is a way of life for many people.

I remember vividly one of my co-workers telling me stories of factory workers, assembly line men and women, who were so tired and unfulfilled with life on a factory assembly line that they walked away and took $5.00 an hour jobs.  That amazed me back then and made a deep impression.

I did not really understand it then.  But I do now, almost 30 years later.  Someone has said, in effect, “Do the thing you have passion for.  You’ll be far more effective than doing something you have no love for.”

I’m a musician.  I’m entering my 36th year as a guitar player and have added other instruments along the way.  I have had a number of mini-careers (baker, staff pastor, carpenter, IT professional) since 1982  but music is my heart, soul and vocation.

This morning I spent a few hours sharing thoughts with a group of leaders on taking control and responsibility for our lives.  This afternoon, it was music.  First, I spent some time learning about music production in the studio.  Then I took a few minutes with a buddy, setting up a jam time in the future with him, his wife, Kath and I.  He plays bass and is eager to throw down and grow.

Next, I went off to Watertown to pick up an overdrive pedal that I’ve needed for my electric guitar work.  I’m currently preparing to play in the pit band for a local production of the Broadway musical Little Shop of Horrors.  A terribly funny show.  It will be a blast.

In a local music shop, I met a musician who plays progressive rock in a band.  When I asked where they play, he said, “Are you familiar with Depauville?”  I laughed.  I told him, “I live right across the yard from the hotel where you guys practice and play.”  Now I need to check them out.  I’ve been hearing these guys play and grow for about 6 years now, courtesy of my unscreened front porch.  (Queen August is the band, for you locals.)

This is a huge part of my future and my DNA.  I will always play but I’m determined now, more than ever, to do all I can to give myself fully to this pathway.  It’s what I’ve been made to do.

Do what you love–at all costs.  You won’t be disappointed nearly as much as doing something that leaves your acuity and your heart unfulfilled.

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4 responses

22 01 2012
Dan Byers

Hey Chris
I loved your blog….I know you are right I was excited when I was reading it, yet fearful at the same time because I know me and my failures. I am afraid to dream because I don’t want to fail. I know where there is no risk there is no gain. I know failure happens just have seen a lot of that in my life over the years. Thanks so much for your blog!

22 01 2012
Christian Fahey

Thanks for reading, D! Don’t be afraid. Just begin taking small steps, moving in the direction of fulfilling your ultimate divine design and destiny. You’re going to be pleasantly surprised.

20 06 2012
Getting Real « The Upside

[…] money were no option, what would I do for a career?  We’ve posted previously here at The Upside about the importance of doing what you love and were designed to do.  You have a sacred obligation […]

31 08 2013
Get Real! | The Upside

[…] money were no option, what would I do for a career?  We’ve posted previously here at The Upside about the importance of doing what you love and were designed to do.  You have a sacred obligation […]

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