I would love to claim this as my own, but the following article was written by Sherri Fulmer Moorer. It is one of the best articles I’ve had the privilege of reading, and it surely expresses my own sentiments. Sherri wisely chose to drop out of the rat race:
I want to officially let the world know that I am out of the rat race. If I was ever pulled in it, I officially withdraw. Leave me out of the hypocrisy of making it to the top. As a Christian, I have no business with such nonsense. I don't even belong to this world. As of right now, I choose not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of my mind (Romans 12:2) .
Every graduate should be told that the world is waiting to tear you apart. It's not your imagination - they are out to get you! The world cannot drag you down unless you let it. The secret to real success is to not live by the world. Who knows God's will for your life but you? As believers, "we know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose"(Romans 8:28). Personally, I don't need to stay on the world's performance/acceptance merry-go-round, so I'm jumping off. I'll take each day as it comes and believe that there is a purpose for all that happens to me, for better or worse.
I don't need the anxiety of living the American Dream. So far, all I've seen is jealousy, greed, anger, resentment, and anxiety. This dream is a nightmare. Jesus said it perfectly when he said, "the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly" (John 10:10). The pursuit of success in this world will steal, kill, and destroy every shred of peace in your mind. I prefer to accept Christ's salvation and live in the abundance He promises to His believers. If the Lord wants me promoted, nothing anybody can do will stop Him from promoting me. Likewise, if He wants me to stay put or even to step down, nothing I can do will stop it from happening.
I'm taking everything in my life and putting it into God's hands. I give Him all the success and failure, joy and pain, laughter and tears. Henceforth He is in control, and I will follow His lead to find the one and only path to happiness that exists - His will for my life.
Life is not fair, and there is no way I will ever understand the complexities of how or why God does what He does in this world. It is too big for my small mind to comprehend. So I willingly agree to replace logic with faith. May the knowledge and experiences of today give way to the wisdom of tomorrow.
The world is a crazy, mixed-up place. Fortunately, our time here is limited. My main goal in life has changed - instead of worldly success, I want to come to the end of my life and be able to tell God "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith" (2 Timothy 4:7). I have claimed the salvation of Christ through my baptism and confirmation, and I will live my life in the joy that He offers. The trappings of this world mean nothing to me because I don't have to live by it.
So goodbye rat race - I officially withdraw! Thankfully, I am doing this while I am young, and (hopefully) well in advance of the finish line. My hope is that more people will come to this realization before the world breaks them in the pursuit of what we ironically call "the good life".