The last two weeks have been a roller coaster of up and down emotions. I was on a top of the world high and then dropped down to a low pit of stress. I kept telling myself and others that I can’t do this; I questioned my ability to get my work done, I questioned my intelligence, I questioned my worth and I compared myself to other people. I basically did everything that I worked so hard this summer to stop doing.
I forgot everything that is truly important. I forgot all the lessons I learned this past summer. I forgot to trust God. I forgot why I was here. I forgot who brought me here. I forgot who is with me on this journey. I forgot who I am. I forgot the ground of faith that I have worked hard to build my life on. I forgot that I want to teach. I forgot that I love research. I forgot I love the hunt for the “golden source.” I forgot that God instilled in me a love of books, history and research. I forgot that God equipped me to succeed on this path. I forgot to believe in myself. I forgot to take care of myself. I forgot I am not alone. I forgot that I cannot do this alone. I just forgot.
But then yesterday, I felt the peace of God and I remembered. I remembered why I came here, who led me here and who has made my path clear. I remembered that I was not alone. I remembered that I am here because this is step one to my ultimate goal–becoming a professor. I remembered that I want to teach. I remembered that I love to research and I love to write. I remembered that I could do this and that I enjoyed doing this. I remembered that God is faithful and will keep his promises. I remembered. And I felt something that I haven’t felt in too long, peace and joy.
I was so lost in the rabbit hole that I forgot the rock on which I stand. I let myself believe those negative thoughts: that I wasn’t good enough, that I was not smart enough, everyone else was better than me and that I couldn’t do this. But I can do this, I am good enough, I am smart enough and I cannot compare myself to others. I was making this God planned, unique and beautiful journey a competition of me against everyone else and was setting myself up as the automatic loser. I have a feeling that in some way, shape or form we all do this on some level. We make life out to be a competition between us and the rest of the world–but we have already declared ourselves the losers. We are not losers. We have to switch our mindsets, and remember it is not a competition. We are all on different paths and we are all bearing our own crosses. I have to start giving myself a break and stop expecting perfection. But I have to stop making myself the damsel in distress and allow myself to be the leading lady of my own life (The Holiday anyone??)
I cannot allow myself to forget that I am here for a reason. I got accepted into this school for a reason. I can do this work and I can and will succeed. I am not sure what God has in store for me here but I do know that God is present in every step I make. God led me here to bring me more fully into his plan for my life but I have to stop thrashing about or I will miss the beauty of the moment and I could risk missing the call.
I can’t make the promise that I won’t slip up and forget again. But maybe next time I forget it won’t take me as long to remember.
“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell–and great was its fall!”
Despite the fact that I forgot, I see the damage that was done but I also, see what the damage the storm could have done. Though I forget and I lose my footing, I have worked hard to build my faith upon a rock. So I may have lost my footing and was close to being washed away by the storm, I wasn’t–and that is something to be thankful for. But even if I had been washed away, God’s hands would have reached into the sea and plucked me up and rescued me.
“Let us hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who has promised is faithful.”
May the Peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.