PA School Is Not Your Calling

PA school is not your calling.

Sitting in a classroom for hours being lectured to about the multitude of conditions that can affect the lungs and respiratory tract is not your calling. Taking exam after exam assessing which multiple choice response is the most correct is not your calling. Spending hours coming up with mnemonics to remember the different anti-epileptic drugs is not your calling.

No, PA school is not your calling.

Schooling in general is not anyone’s calling. Being in school is a temporary hurdle, a chapter leading up to the climax of a career. Education is a stepping stone towards the greater goal in mind. Sometimes it feels like school consumes your reality. Sometimes it feels like you will forever be taking tests and studying your days away. But remember, feelings often betray the truth. School is not forever. Your calling, your purpose, your God-ordained vocation: that is forever. Your calling is what you are working for and towards.

My calling is to be a Physician Assistant.

God has placed a love for people, a love for medicine, a love for learning, and a love for serving in my heart. He saw fit for me to grow and be stretched for his glory while being a PA. My calling is not to study anatomy for countless hours learning origins and insertions. My calling is not to memorize the brachial plexus forwards and backwards. No, but anatomy, pharmacology, physiology, and epidemiology are important building blocks to me becoming the most equipped PA I can be before I’m out in the world practicing medicine. I want to have not only the heart but the head knowledge to follow through with my calling.

When I actively choose to see my circumstances as a blessing rather than a burden, miraculous joy replaces my begrudging groans. Never before in my life have I realized just how much attitude can affect the way you view your circumstances until PA school. When I start my day with a spirit of thankfulness, my circumstances don’t change. My day doesn’t suddenly become the best day ever. No, my perspective does change though. The roadblocks that once were insurmountable, the workload that appeared to be endless, they all seem manageable when I take God with me into my day. One of my favorite prayers during this season has been an excerpt from St. Patrick’s Breastplate, a keen reminder that Christ is forever with and near me.

My calling ultimately is to become more like Christ each day I wake up with breath in my lungs and spirit in my soul. In the process of growing up, He revealed to me the PA profession and showed me how my strengths and desires fit perfectly with the particular goals of a Physician Assistant. He created me for this profession, but that doesn’t mean that He created me for PA school.

My calling is not the same as your calling.

My God-given gifts and talents are not the same as your gifts and talents.

And because we were all created with uniqueness and quirkiness, I implore you to explore what your calling may be. Seek God’s counsel if you are unsure what your future holds. Ask Him how your gifts would be best served for glorifying His name.

And if you are actively living out the vocation God has placed in your trust, continue to do your work for the glory of God. Continue to serve and be the hands and feet of Christ wherever you are.

Your calling is not PA school, but sometimes we are placed in situations like PA school that require us to leap.

Leap into the arms of Christ.

Step out in faith knowing that you cannot do this thing called life alone.
Remember that your transient difficulties were handpicked by God to engender growth and foster faith.

Because He loves us, He requires much of us.

One thought on “PA School Is Not Your Calling

  1. Thank you so much for writing so openly about your journey through PA school! I know you wrote this post a while ago, but I stumbled across it today and it was exactly what I needed to read. I am about to start the same program you are currently at in Knoxville, and reading about your experiences has been so encouraging, especially as I think about what it looks like to continue living out my faith as a PA student and eventually as a PA. These past few months (and I’m sure the next three) have been filled with uncertainty and doubt about what this next season will bring, but it is so encouraging to look on your experiences and see the community and growth you have found throughout this process! Best of luck to you as you continue your clinical year!! 🙂


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