Sunday, April 14, 2013

Lesson 186. Don't give up just yet.

Oh sweet thing, I write to you in a very sorry state.

I'm snuggled up on my floor in my sister's high-school musical blanket after having consumed too many cookies (sorry-not-sorry, they were worth every millimeter of bloated-beach-whale belly) and the ground is no longer visible due to a losing combination of sociology notes and discarded clothing from the yesterday's mid-morning can't decide what to wear tanty. Because I missed the first two weeks of Uni, I missed out on a sizable chunk of content to aid me in preparation for my sociology test tomorrow morning, and I'm struggling with it. I'm under prepared and over anxious, and at this point there isn't a lot I can do about it.

So, whilst sitting very much on Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens and their smug smiles (it didn't work out kids, not so smug now are we?) I've made a decision. Tomorrow morning, I go in with great gumption. I walk in with purpose, I take my seat and I write what I do know. Just as I always do with you.

Right now I know this much, I know that giving up is not an option until you've given all. I know that it's not enough to have a pity party and say I've done all I can tonight, I know that I have to read over my notes 'til my eyes are heavy and my head shuts up shop.

I know this much, I know that when life gives you lemons, you have to do more than make yourself a bowl of chocolate icing and sit on the floor in tears (I know this because I tried it earlier today and it didn't go so well.) When things get hard, and you don't know why they've played out the way they have, you have to stand up again. I'm all for taking time to process, I know this to be crucial, but I'm not for letting heartbreak paralyse you further. Winnie the Pooh once told me "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think" and I believe him to be quite right.

I don't know if I'll pass tomorrow morning. But I know that the odds go up the minute I walk through the doors and into the lecture theatre. I know that they get a little greater during every crazy conversation I have with myself about cultural studies in sociology.

Maybe you've got a test in the near future. Maybe each day is a test, maybe just getting through is your mountain, but please know that each morning when your feet hit the floor you're getting your head one step closer to sunshine.

Oh sweet thing, don't give up just yet.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Lesson 185. Just wait.

Welcome to the world in which we live,

We rush. We demand answers. We want our wants to be supplied at the same rate as our needs. Prayers are fired up as 'gimme's' as opposed to trusting in his ability to know when and what is right for us. We tell God that we'd like this job at this time, the storm to calm within the next 5 minutes, and everything we don't understand to be clarified by the click of our fingers.

Then when things don't go the way we'd like them to, we're quick to grow weary and disheartened. We become disillusioned about God and his whereabouts, confused about why he's not doing as we've told him to. I know this because I've done this, and I've battled with him many sleepless, tearful nights over why things are the way they are. I've screamed into pillows and stuttered through sobs "Why do we lose the ones we love?" "Why does it hurt like this?" and "Why won't you just make this go away?"

I don't have answers to those questions and I probably never will. I haven't gained an understanding of why, but I have come to realise that in waiting for the sun to rise, the darkness pulls us closer together. In the midst of the pillow-screams and stutter-sobs, I've drawn close to the ones I love. I've leant on God and God alone because there is nothing else to hold onto. I have found hope in hopeless situations because I have had to, I have seen the strength of my heavenly father in getting me out of bed each morning. I have felt his arms as I have been shaken by deep sadness, and I have found a real, raw sense of joy as I rest in the only one able to truly restore.

So maybe it's not about getting what we want exactly when we want it. Maybe it's about being here, right now, messy, impatient, tired, sad, frustrated. Maybe it's about being here right now, growing closer to the author of the universe, knowing and loving him more, falling deeper into his arms and hearing his steady heartbeat sing out his rhythms of grace. Maybe waiting is not a hindrance but an opportunity.

Just wait.