// I’m really terrible at keeping up with this blog LOL, but I kind of miss it merp.
As I’m now almost 4 weeks into my last semester of college, I’ve found myself sharing and reflecting about my past experiences and realizing how far I’ve come since my bright-eyed and bushy-tailed freshman self.
It’s been one crazy ride.
In my most recent post, I wrote about how I felt pathetic and that I hated feeling lonely and sad all the time because the thing I craved for the most was community, yet I felt like I didn’t have it.
I got really angry and frustrated with my personality, my tendencies, and where God had placed me in my college ministry. I hated that I was the initiator, the planner, the leader, and the senior. I wanted so badly for people to reach out to me, and when they didn’t, I thought that something was wrong with me or I wasn’t fun enough — I started to attack my self worth. It sucked. At first, I thought all of this was just in my head…just doubtful thoughts that weren’t real, but a close friend of mine had unknowingly hurt me which made me realize it wasn’t just in my head…it was real. People really didn’t want to hang out with me — even one of my closest friends. I started to question everything. Who were my friends? Did I make the wrong friends in my early years of college? How do you make friends? Do I even have friends? I’ll admit…it was bad. I started to question God, asking Him why He made me the way He did, why I had to try so hard to find community where community came to others so easily, why I was left with (once again) no community…the one thing I had always prayed for. I was frustrated and angry – I just didn’t want to try anymore.
As the semester went on, I was reminded by God and others that He had made me in His image. He was intentional and purposeful in creating me with the strengths and gifts that I have, and I was reminded of how He’s used those same strengths and gifts to glorify His kingdom — how He’s used me to further His kingdom and Epic. Even though I was reminded of these things, I still felt empty. I still felt lonely. I so desperately wanted to get out of this funk and move forward from this state of loneliness, but I just didn’t know how to.
Halfway through the semester everything was made clear to me.
During my church’s college group retreat, the speaker talked about how we needed to be in awe of God and the Word. The passion and weight of the speaker’s words really spoke to me. Everything I had heard before and during the retreat made me realize there was an underlying issue that I wasn’t even aware of. I didn’t love God as much as I used to. In the midst of my loneliness and everything else, the lens that I saw everyone around me in was negative and toxic. I wanted to spend time with people, but I also didn’t want to be around people. How does that even work??? Beats me lol. The love I had for God before was so great that it overflowed in my own life and to those around me, but I hated people — I didn’t want to be around anyone. It made me sad. Sad because I wasn’t seeing people the way God sees them, and I wasn’t seeing myself the way God saw me. Sad that I had lost this awe and love for Him that once overflowed from me.
I broke down crying.
I was so caught up in what I wanted and what I needed that I lost sight of God altogether. I was being selfish. I was so focused on myself that I had lost sight of God in the process of it all. Things that I had heard and read started flooding my thoughts.
>> A few weeks prior, a friend randomly sent me an article about self-worth and how it was about a lack of awe in God more than anything else. Intrigued, I read it.
You’re playing a game on your phone as you’re walking through a forest of tall redwood trees. A friend tells you to stop playing and look at the trees – you don’t hear them because you’re too engulfed in your game. Your friend, amazed at the trees, tells you again to stop playing and look at the trees. Reluctantly, you do it, but you tell yourself only for a split second because you’re in the middle of your game.
You look up.
Captivated, you’re struck by the size and magnitude of these trees. How the trees reach for the skies and stretch across for miles everywhere you turned. You were in awe and taken aback by the beauty of these magnificent trees and realizing how small you were in the grand scheme of things. Captivated, you forgot about your game. <<
It all made sense to me. I realized that I had put all my focus on myself and my lens on life was so small that all I could see was the loneliness, the pain, and the frustrations there were right in front of me and nothing else. I had questioned where God was through all of this not realizing that He was there the entire time. I just had to look up. Sometime during this, I read in a book “My prayers were futile because I was looking at my inadequacy instead of God’s adequacy”. I realized I had made God so small. I didn’t think He cared or that He could help me or that He even heard my cries of desperation, but the truth is He did. He had orchestrated this crazy plan to reveal how He was there for me and how much He loved me, but I was too blind to see it because I was so focused on myself.
Though this process was extremely hard and painful, God continued to seek me out and to reveal Himself to me. My whole mindset changed. My heart for people and for God, and the way I saw myself had been renewed.
As I’m now almost 4 weeks into my last semester of college, I’m beyond honored that God is using me to reach students on my campus. Though it may be physically and emotionally taxing at times, it is so cool to see how God is working in the hearts and lives of those around me, and I get to be a part of that! God is so cool.
So here’s to growth, pain, experiences, and more. Let’s go, God.