Today was…well, let’s just start at the beginning.
This morning I woke up to Zorro, one of my three dogs, sleeping at the edge of my bed, staring at me. Sunlight was pouring in through my blinds and, though it was cold, I felt very comfortable. It was a great morning 🙂
God does this cool thing where, if I’m worried, if I can’t quite figure out how to go about doing something, if I’m uncomfortable in my brain, He lets me know He’s there. With how comfortable I was this morning, with the perfect winter weather, with my dog sitting in with me and a glorious day ahead of me, I felt Him. He was there, waiting for me to wake up, ready to teach me what I needed to be taught, waiting to show me things I need to see. He’s ready to train me before I’m ready to listen. Cool huh? 🙂
Realizing what time it was, I quickly got dressed and ran downstairs to brush my teeth and such. Mom and I then headed off to church to help decorate. The moment I walked into the sanctuary, the ladies there had huge smiles on their faces, making me feel loved and missed. I was so happy to see them and so grateful for their hugs. Decorating when much quicker than I thought it would, but I enjoyed every moment of it. Mom and I, along with others, were responsible for setting up the ridiculously tall tree and then decorating it. After we figured out how to work the tree (which sounds easy but believe me, it’s not), it was smooth sailing from there; we hung ornaments, twirled garland, and spun beads. During the summer I had helped paint the parsonage and I was able to take a tour through it to see how it had all come together. It was amazing! I love seeing final projects, especially after seeing the before pictures. I love homes and putting them together and making them warm and comfortable. What can I say? I am a woman 🙂
Mom and I headed home after decorating and I baked pumpkin chocolate chip cookies for my best friend’s birthday. I have not introduced her to you yet, but I shall! Cheyenne has been my best friend since pre-school. We’ve been through some crazy things together and we’ve stayed friends through moves, break-ups, family issues, and personal change. She’s not saved, but she’s still my best friend. I’ve talked to her about God plenty of times, but that was when I was using the baseball-bat-method instead of letting God love her through me. I’ve grown in Him a little, so now I wait for Him to tell me to speak. Maybe one day she’ll see how much He loves her…I hope she does.
I make the drive to the little town of Sherburne (little, but bigger than my town). When I arrive at her house, I am fearful of the perversion my friends had adopted post-graduation, fearful of their outlooks and their stances on certain ideas. But then I remember what I’ve been experiencing for the past three months on a completely different planet. God has gotten me through exposure to so many things I never thought I would encounter, things far more complicated than my smallish brain could ever comprehend. This party is nothing He can’t handle. So I step in confidently. Chey’s mom is standing on the back porch as I walk up the drive. She smiles and asks me if my backing up skills have improved. Last year, me, Chey, and a bunch of friends were going to a dance, and I was driving everyone. Well, I was backing out of her driveway, listening to everyone talking, and before I knew it a loud crunching and cracking sound echoed through the car. I had smashed my right-side mirror off of a fence post. Oh I was so embarrassed! Thankfully, God had the repair be the cheapest and easiest fix my mother has ever seen for a side mirror. Just another time He’s looked out for me when I was being a doofus.
The actual party, where we sang Happy Birthday and Chey opened presents and we all ate cake and ice-cream, was very entertaining. As I sat at her dining room table, listening to the chatter around me and watching her laugh and enjoy herself, I was reminded of how simple my life here is. In New York City, everything seems to be so much more complicated. We ask questions like, “what is the self?” or “what is our purpose in life?” or “what is truth?” and even “are we figments of our own imagination?” But here in the sticks, where we just be ourselves and act like goofballs and do the right thing just because it’s what we know we should do, everything is simple; we don’t care about these questions. I’m not saying that we don’t care about life or about purpose or about knowing, but I am saying that we don’t care about finding an answer we like. We understand life in its simplest form. For my friends in particular, they understand life as, “even though things aren’t working out the way I thought they would, I’m enjoying every moment because I have good friends, good food, and a good future.” I understand it similarly, just as simply: “even though things aren’t working out the way I thought they would, I’m enjoying every moment because God has given me too many reasons to overcomplicate things, to overdramatize things.” I think if people would just drop all of the things they use to mask their insecurities, like I sometimes use humor and sarcasm to mask the fact that I’m worried, then life would be a hundred times simpler, and it would be much easier to see God in our lives.
After the party was over, all of the “kids” (there are about eight in our little group) stayed for a good six or seven hours, playing ninja in the snow, watching Harry Potter, playing Munchkin and Apples to Apples. I’ve never actually played Munchkin before, so I hadn’t expected to win the game. For some reason, it seemed like everyone around the table wanted me to win, and I did. We determined that I am the most normal one out of our group, which makes me the weirdest 🙂 We ordered pizza and discussed feminism along with how the upcoming generation is ridiculously addicted to technology. Don’t get me wrong; I appreciate technology, especially for the way is simplifies communication, writing, and research. But it’s just been taken too far. There was a commercial on today where kids were outside in the snow playing Nintendo 3DS. They were outside, but they weren’t ACTUALLY playing outside. They might as well been inside. When I went outside as a kid, it was because it was OUTSIDE. If I wanted to play video games or be on the computer, I would’ve stayed inside. Okay, I’m going to stop ranting now.
One by one we left and went back home, and somehow, during our conversations, I was convinced to hold a Christmas party at my house after finals. I’m not quite sure how this happened, but it’s not like I don’t have experience with throwing Christmas parties 🙂 almost every year I hold a Christmas party at my house where I make a home-cooked meal (usually lasagna or spaghetti or something) along with a few sweet things. Other people bring things like soda and chips. We play the Wii, laugh, take random pictures, and just have a great time. I’m really excited about it. I love throwing parties and inviting tons of people. For some reason, I just really enjoy practicing hospitality, especially when I can see people having a great time and really enjoying themselves. If the whole writing thing doesn’t work out, maybe I’ll become an event planner 😛 Just kidding; it all depends on what God wants me to do….but it would be cool to be an event planner.
I come home and, before I get settled, I head over to my Aunt Joan’s house to talk to them before I leave tomorrow afternoon. My grandparents are over there so I’m able to talk to them too 🙂 It was a God thing. We talk for some time about college, about life, about memories. Then we’re all distracted by the football game on the television. It was Alabama v. Auburn. Now, I’m not at all a football person. I wish I was, but I’m just not. Regardless, this game had me excited. Grandma and I were jumping up and down as Auburn won with a 109 yard touchdown with one second left in the game. It was crazy! When I came home I told my father about it and he was excited about it too. It was awesome!
Then I remembered: I still had homework.
Oh curse you, homework! But it’s okay; I just have to work my butt off for about two more weeks and then I’m home free for about a month or so. I can do this. Yeah.
My final project for Botany is due on Tuesday and then my final exam is a week from then. My revisions for Critical Thinking & Writing along with two other assignments are due on Monday. Final story revisions (spiritual allegory) and a critical response to The Waves by Virginia Woolf are due Thursday. I also have to study for my Botany exam and my World Literature exam…and you know what’s weird about having all of this piled onto my to-do list? I’m actually really excited about it. I’m excited to see how God is going to push me, how He’s going to guide me through it, how He’s going to grow my faith.
Bring it on.
“But He knows the way that I take [He has concern for it, appreciates, and pays attention to it]. When He has tried me, I shall come forth as refined gold [pure and luminous].” —Job 23:10, AMP.