Past month or so has been rough.
This was just a recent, short reflection that I had the other week.
Lately, I’ve been reflecting a lot on my tongue.
A kind of while ago, someone told me they like to use “wrestling” instead of “struggling.” A lot of information has entered and passed through my brain since then, so I can’t do much to expand on that (sorry).
I’m pretty sure it came up, at least somewhat, in regards to my constant use of “struggling” when I write. After that conversation, my perspective started shifting a bit and I’ve been more mindful and intentional of when I use wrestle and when I use struggle (thanks for that).
Very recently, I was reminded of this and I spent some time of intentional re-reflection (thanks for that as well).
I have the sinful tendency to grip too tightly. When the depths of my heart knew that God was saying “no,” I still held on with white knuckles and nails digging into my palms. When I expected God to say “yes ” but He said “no,” I felt like my He had to rip my arms off along with my plans.
One of my best friends sent me this piece, “Singleness: My Only Companion.” The writer shares how she’s well into her 30’s and still single. Hasn’t hadn’t a single boyfriend. Her second to last paragraph, she writes:
I’ve come to hold all things loosely—including the good things I desire. As I get older, I realize that this unrequited desire may never be filled. But I arrive at this conclusion with a peace that surpasses all human understanding and an inner resolve wrought by the Holy Spirit. I know that God promises to be “a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly” (Psalm 84:11, ESV). What God has not granted to me at this time is not necessary, but what he does grant is.
“Hold all things loosely.”
That’s the opposite of what I am usually doing.
Three Sundays ago, the pastor spent some time talking about God’s timing. He said that there is no such thing as bad timing, only God’s timing. Sometimes, this requires a long, long wait for God’s green light. Whether the wait is short or extraordinarily long, God will get us where He wants us, when He wants us there.
God’s timing and God’s will have been prominent thoughts on my mind the past few months. Reminding myself that God gets people where He wants them in His time was what really helped me to find peace in a few areas of my life.
As I’ve shared endless times before, I was struggling hard with things not going the way I planned, with people in my life, with me feeling lost. After deciding against a career in education, I graduated and was left lost. The several months that followed were difficult because I had no idea of what I wanted to do with my future, what long-term plans to start working towards.
I’ve been having a good week so far. It started off so well with the weekend that my mood just carried over, even if my week didn’t offer anything special. This is coming right when I’m also feeling excitement over starting devotionals again. Extra hype.
It’s been a few months since I’ve done devotionals, and praying has been difficult for a while now. Whenever we start praying privately at church, my attention span doesn’t last more than 30 seconds. I haven’t properly prayed in a long, long time and now, it often feels as if I don’t even know how to pray anymore.
This might sound stupid, but going back into my devotionals, I was nervous. I was nervous because I feared that it would be the same as my prayer life, where I feel like I don’t quite know what to do or how to do it anymore.
I stopped pursuing God on a day-to-day for so long, that it started to feel normal. How scary is that?
I don’t want that to feel normal. I don’t want to go back to being miserable and seeking comfort in everything but God. I don’t want Scripture and prayer to feel routine or forced anymore. My good mood has definitely made it easier this week, but I’m scared of what it’ll be like once that dies out. Will I revert back to the way I was just a week ago?
How do I keep this going?
I (finally) got started on my graduate school applications. Rest assured, my laziness was not my sole reason for putting them off. I was waiting on something else to potentially work out. Unfortunately, it didn’t… Not that that’s a good reason for putting my applications off, because I should have been working on them regardless.
Mixed with other stuff from this week, I’m starting to feel overwhelmed. I’m stressed, sad, scared, and discouraged.
What if I don’t get into school? What if I don’t get an assistantship or adequate aid? How will I afford school then? What if I’m making a mistake? Will I finally feel satisfaction in my work if I pursue this path? Am I pursuing something I genuinely care about? Why did I let my four years on undergraduate go to such waste?
That’s just to share a few.
Other aspects of my life that I was bitter and angry about no longer make me feel that way. At least, not at God. Although they still break my heart, I told myself, “Jane, just leave it to God. What happens, happens. Arguing and fighting futile fights isn’t doing any good.” You know what? Even though my heart still aches, I am so much more at ease now.