Yall, it’s been a crazy few weeks. Ever since this semester began, I’ve been going non-stop trying to join new clubs and apply for internships and keep up with all of my class assignments- and for those of you who were around for my sophomore slump, you know that it is a wonderful thing that I’m in such a motivated state of mind. When I’m on campus, the attitude that I have to keep running around like crazy until I’ve accomplished everything is the norm. And maybe in a lot of senses, that’s not a big deal when it comes to things like schoolwork. But what about when it comes to my faith?
In my last post, I talked about how sometimes God has to break our hearts so that we will turn back to Him. But even though I’ve made peace with this notion because I know that great things will come of it, it doesn’t mean that I always handle my feelings the right way. In this particular case, I think that I’ve addressed this difficult transition by just keeping myself busy. There have seriously been moments where I’ve gone through this thought process where I’m thinking, “Okay, obviously I needed God to break my heart because I wasn’t handling this area of life correctly… so maybe if I can get all of these other areas of my life under control, he’ll see that I’m still following him and he’ll give back to me the comfort that I lost.” And while I’m running around trying to display my faith in all of these other areas of life, praying that God will move me forward to the next “step,” I’m totally missing the point: It’s not about the next step, it’s about where I’m at right now.
This whole thought process reminds me of the two girls that I babysit every week. Almost every time that I ask them to clean their room or to stop hitting each other or to be quiet so that I can talk to them, their immediate reaction is to yell “NO!” and run away as quickly as they can, even though they know that one of two things will happen: 1) I’ll chase after them, catch them, and still make them do whatever they just refused to do; or 2) they’ll get tired of running, come right back to me, and I’ll still make them do whatever they just refused to do. Either way, they end up back in the same place they were to begin with.
I think that’s the way we are with God sometimes. We don’t want to do some of the tough, heart-changing things that he asks us to do, so we just run away and try to “fool” him by displaying our faith in every way but the way that he’s asking. That’s what I’ve been doing these past few weeks- even though I think I’m serving Him the way I should, the hard truth is that I’m not. I think it’s just that we’re all so accustomed to running around and trying to get to the next biggest thing that the idea of being still and allowing God to work in our lives while we stay exactly where we are just doesn’t click very well. Last night I told my mom that I was so frustrated because I felt like I had been praying so fervently for God to just give me an answer- for him to give me the strength and the guidance to just know what I needed to do and to do it- and I wasn’t getting anything. It’s a hard place to be, but I think the reason that I’m not getting any answers is because I’m not willing to go through the process.
So, here’s what I’ve concluded: God wants me right here. Trusting him, practicing patience, swallowing my pride, and being still. The other day I saw a quote from C.S. Lewis that said this: “There are a dozen views about everything until you know the answer. Then there is never more than one.” I’ve never felt like the answer to such a complicated problem was so simple until the moment I felt convicted that maybe this whole thing doesn’t depend on how much I can run around and accomplish (shocking, I know)- and Lewis’ point rings true in this instance- this is where God wants me. Does anything else matter?
Coming to this realization has been tough for me, because I really struggle with patience. But as I was thinking about my analogy with the girls I babysit, I considered that the only reason I tell them to do those things is for their own good- I would never put them in a situation where they could be harmed. And if I expect them to trust me, a college student who has known them for a few weeks, how much more should God expect me to trust Him? He is a loving God. He is holy and He is just and He has this perfect plan for me. And most importantly, He died just to know me.
WHY am I trying to stay busy and avoid His commands?
It doesn’t matter how many unanswered questions there are in my life right now, because the only important question is this: where do I feel like God wants me? Right here. He wants me right here. Praise Him for bringing us exactly where we should be.
“From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”