The Tension of People and Calling

In a pivotal scene from the movie Mona Lisa Smile starring Julia Roberts, the brilliant but single professor confronts a female student who is giving up her dreams of law school for marriage. The student counters that she wants a family and there’s nothing wrong with her choice. Whispering almost to herself, the teacher comments, but “you can have both.”

Though this dilemma is presented as a primarily female problem, those with great visions of their futures often struggle with the demand of relationships upon their lives. This conflict is presented in a variety of ways in other movies and books—the husband who works too much and neglects his family or the intelligent woman who is forced to choose between a career and starting a family. Also prevalent is the academic who lives in a world of books and seems afraid to engage people. There is no denying that there is a tension there between relationship and calling.

Jesus too felt this tension, probably more keenly than any other person in history.

See the rest at Emerging Scholars Network.

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