This morning I made the observation that maintaining personal hygiene, eating, and sleeping are all serious inconveniences during finals, and how I wish I could say it lasted only for a week. Regardless of this present insanity, God is still good 🙂 I’ve been thinking more and more about how finals really aren’t THAT big of a thing, and in five years I probably won’t remember the critique I got on my Travel Writing portfolio (due in two weeks) or the grade I got on my final paper for World Civ. (due in three weeks, proposal due tomorrow) or the way my hair practically fell out as I rushed to complete several assignments due one day after the other (German, French, and Studio class). But right now, in this time, finals are a big thing, and although they’re not being a missionary, or having my life being threatened, or being a mother, as a college student, this is a huge area for God to work in, especially for me. It’s really easy to get stressed and panicky during this time, especially when you want to relax but really can’t because there’s so much work to be done, but God is good in bringing in ample time for me to spend with Him, for Hannah, Beth, and especially Jacob to so willingly and deliberately bring in what they’re learning about Christ to encourage me and tease my brain throughout the day as I pray and as I move around, pen in hand. And then there’s God, just Him, as He is 🙂
I’m sure some of you are wondering what happened during my adventure with the Brock sisters on our trip to Fort Campbell. God is good 🙂 He blessed me with Jacob and with all of the greatness God has poured into him, and He’s blessed me with his character. God uses him to encourage me often, even before all of the wonderful everything transpired over this past weekend. And I’m insanely excited to see how God is going to grow both of us together in Him, how He’s going to grow and use Jacob while he’s in South Korea, and how He’s going to challenge and strengthen and comfort me while he’s gone. I know I’ve said this about a million times already, but I’m very excited, and my heart is so haywire with something I can’t describe but I know it’s good and from God, and that’s the most secure, reassuring, comforting thing ever 😀
God gave me many opportunities to grow in my relationship with Hannah and Beth, and especially Christina, the sister to whom I wasn’t as close. I met tons of young men on fire for God and was able to see Jacob interact with them. I saw Fort Campbell, where young men and women train to defend our country, and it was awesome 🙂 I went to the museum on base and saw monuments and different kinds of aircraft and listened to Jacob as he talked about each thing and listened to the rest of our party as they asked questions and made observations. And on the ride up and the ride down, I fell on my face a few times while talking to the people I didn’t know, and was quite obviously too exhausted to be talking anyway, which probably (definitely) had something to do with it, but the conversations and laughter and awesomeness in the van was still just that: awesome 🙂
I also won Apples to Apples during game night, but that’s irrelevant I suppose 😛
God always gives me exactly what I need, and every once in a while, because He’s God and His desire is to bless me (He WANTS to bless me and DELIGHTS in blessing me), He gives me what I want and what I need in the same sweep of a hand, and that’s amazing 🙂
And as I’m sitting here, after taking several days to give my thoughts and feelings to God and spend time with Him, sorting all of them out until they’d slowed down and only excitement and hope and readiness were left, I get to catch a glimpse of just how awesome He is 🙂 Thinking back on all of the times I was uncertain, unsure, feeling incapable, or feeling worried, He always kept me up and pushed me forward, even when I was paralyzed by fear. I’m not saying I won’t go there again. After all, I am 100% human and 100% flawed and I fall on my face both literally and figuratively all the time, but He’s always willing to help me take one more step towards not falling over again. I’m so glad He’s so willing to help me.
God is really just the best person to talk to. My mother is a wonderful soundboard that I can bounce things off of and get advice from, and God has placed several older, wiser, more experienced people in my life (Grandma Pat, Uncle Doug and Aunt Lori, Pastor Dan and Julie, Sam and Maria…) from whom I can always get sound counsel and a clear challenge to take God on in different areas of life. But God…He knows what’s going on. He knows what’s going to happen and what consequences will result from which decisions. I mean, in Psalm 139, David says “In your (God’s) book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them” (v.16) And then Psalm 61 says “Trust in him at all times (AT ALL TIMES), O people; pour out your hearts before him; God is a refuge for us” (v.8). So I can trust Him, and tell Him everything, and should ask Him for counsel in everything, even during finals, because He already knows. He knows my heart, He knows every day of my life, what’s going to happen, how it’s going to happen, and who’s going to be involved. He knows all of it, and He asks me to trust Him for that reason, just underneath the fact that He is God and is faithful and trustworthy.
The past couple of days have consisted of my writing nonstop on anything I could get my hands on in order to talk to Him, especially when I couldn’t talk to Him out loud. I just wrote page after page of everything that was going on in my brain, and last night, after talking to Jacob and being encouraged by him and after talking to God even more, I was able to sit back and be overwhelmed by the awesomeness of it all, and understand that this is amazing, this life that God has given me, and no matter what happens, good or bad, He’s in control, and is there and active in both the trials and the triumphs, the vanity and the victory, pushing me, pulling me, charging me through it. He’s shown me how to focus on what’s going on right now, to be aware of the future and aware of His plans for me and His will for me, but to really focus on, pray through, and enjoy and savor what’s going on in this exact moment, to remember that He’s made me to live day by day.
And that is really, really cool 🙂
So yes 🙂 I have my second college basketball game ever tomorrow night. I have three weeks of finals ahead of me and a mountainous pile of homework (it just seems to keep growing, kind of like laundry, which really never seems to go away), and certainly numerous battles to face as well. And I don’t doubt for a second that there will be moments when I just want to stop and freak out and stress out and possibly even curl up into a ball and eat green tea ice-cream, but God is good in the way He absorbs the stress and the fear and the hurt. And I have to trust Him to do that, I have to trust that He is who He says He is, and that everything He does is for my good, and for His glory 🙂
He’s kind of amazing 🙂
“Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” —Isaiah 40:30-31, ESV