God does this thing where He brings things up from the past to remind me what my future is supposed to look like. Unlike the enemy, who brings up my past to injure me, abuse me, condemn me, God uses the things I’ve learned from or the things (encouragement, gifts, words of wisdom) I’ve received to push me forward and remind me that I’m His child, a child of light.
My alarm didn’t go off this morning, but I think it was God thing because I’ve been so stressed lately and pressed for time that I really needed the sleep. I woke up in plenty of time to do my Bible Study and get ready for the day. I saw the quiet alarm as a blessing in disguise.
Bible Study this morning was an assurance of God’s love for me. Isaiah 61:3 says that the children of God are the ‘planting of The Lord,’ something He boasts about. We are on display as God’s glory for all the world to see, and to God, we are one beautiful sight. 🙂
World Literature was all about Sigmund Freud. Monday night, while I was studying with Edward, I was reading through the works assigned for class, highlighting and arguing with and defining points and terms. But as I continued reading, I began to wonder what this had to do with World Literature and I was deeply disturbed by the theories presented before me. I found another area of life I wasn’t sure about: psychology.
While I understand the value of psychology, I find myself asking God often what He thinks about it. How does psychology fit into the Bible? Are specific kinds of psychology biblical, and if so, which kinds?
This morning in class, as my professor gave a lecture on no piece of classical literature really but on the theories and ideas of Freud, I again had the question of what this had to do with World Literature. But maybe I’m being ignorant.
Regardless, throughout the class, I prayed. I had never considered psychology in the way Freud does, and it made me nervous and I wasn’t sure how to react to it or, more importantly, whether or not to receive it.
After World Literature, I had a meeting with my Studio professor. He advised me well on my writing, encouraging me to not bank so much on grammatical strength and just let myself write, THEN take the opportunity to revise. Duh.
But then he recommended books to me, specifically by Campbell. He encouraged me, subtly, to be empowered by my power as a writer. He encouraged me to push for the unexpected, to shake things up a bit in my writing. I left the meeting feeling darkly excited.
When I checked out the books, however, and began reading it, something inside just didn’t feel right. I don’t normally bank on feelings, but this was one of those gut, Holy Spirit-conviction feelings, and I suddenly felt very sick to my stomach. I put down the book and sat back, trying to organize my thoughts.
Critical Thinking & Writing came and went. I just couldn’t focus. Prattler came and went. My mind was still in a fog. I went to the gym and ran four miles, feeling like I could run another two but not wanting to waste any more time.
When I returned to my dorm, I took a hot shower and changed into sweatpants. That’s when I realized what I could accept and not accept. It’s extremely difficult for me to take the advice of my professors without a grain of salt, without being skeptical and trying to be discerning. I always have to compare what they’re saying to what God says in His word, because there are too many things I don’t know and too many things I haven’t experienced.
While it’s true I have an element of power as a writer, and I should embrace my talents and just write like a crazy person, I also have to remember where the talent came from in the first place. Being self-empowered via my writing is a very bad idea, because writing was never meant to satisfy or fulfill or empower me. Certain writers and different books have certainly encouraged and inspired me, but the only best seller that’s ever fulfilled the void in my chest was written by the Author of Salvation. If my writing isn’t glorifying God or pursuing His kingdom, then what’s the point?
Now, I’m not saying all writing other than Christian writing is bad. That’s so not true. I personally love Jane Austen (I mean, Fitzwilliam Darcy? Yes), and one of my favorite books is The Miles Between by Mary E. Pearson, but neither of these authors are religious. What I’m saying is this: I want to use every ounce of my talent for God, and if I’m writing in plot twists and dramatic scenes for the sake of empowering myself as a writer, for the sole sake of drawing the reader in instead of striving to show them truth, then I don’t even know why I’m a writer.
My Studio professor is my favorite professor this semester. I’ve learned a lot in his class, and I understand his advice. And I will take part of it. I will learn to just write and not be so rigid in my pursuit of grammatically immaculate prose. But I will also strive to write as God would want me to.
Or maybe I totally misinterpreted what my professor said and we actually had a great conversation on Swedish meatballs. Either way, I definitely remembered why I wanted to be a writer in the first place. It’s not just because it’s something I live and breathe, not just because it’s a passion or a hobby, but rather because it’s something God has given me to use well, and I don’t want to let Him down.
Bree and I signed up for our room next year. It’s really happening. I’m going to be a sophomore in college. I really just can’t believe freshman year is already almost over…it’s insane. I survived. Well, almost 😛 Imagine how this year would’ve gone if I didn’t have God, if He hadn’t blessed me with my church family, with my family back home, with Christian friends, with hope? I don’t even want to think about it.
I was sitting in the library at one point today when I began to remember how to fight. I pulled out my Bible and some index cards and began to practice. Last semester the Brocks sent me a box filled with different things, all of which I kept. One particular thing that I brought out today was a stack of index cards with verses on them, and these are what began the sharpening of my iron, which had been dulled by so many attacks so often. God brought something from the recent past to push me towards the future.
He’s amazing 🙂
“For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock.” —Psalm 27:5.