Lately, I've been thinking about how nice it would have been to actually realize the future my parents envisioned for me when I was young. Somewhere between childhood and adulthood, I managed to stray so far from their chosen path that I'm not sure they're able to recognize me now, what with the haze and distortion of the long distances between us.
When I was a child, it was pretty much assumed that I would attend a Christian college. In junior high, it looked certain that I would be going to Western Baptist in Salem. But when I was really young, the plan was always to have me go off to Oral Roberts University and become a gospel singer. My mom eventually changed her mind on that (thanks, Patti Roberts), but still, it probably puzzled everyone when I chose Western Washington over Western Baptist. I even gave up on music in the end, possible a bigger surprise than giving up on Christianity.
I don't think it's really the "in" thing for atheists to do, but if someone called me up tomorrow and offered me a job as a gospel singer, I'd probably take the gig.