Life hits hard when you least expect it. You think everything is going fine, but out of nowhere that stability is shattered. You try to wrap your mind around it and search for answers in a desperate attempt to make sense of the situation. In unexplainably difficult situations as these, the only release is crying. You mourn and ask “why me?!” and try to wish the situation away. But when you open your eyes, you realize the reality of the situation and a deep overwhelming sorrow sets in that you can do nothing to change it.
I love to help people. It makes me feel useful when I can be there for someone to help them through a difficult time. Growing up, I dealt with very few heartbreaking or life changing situations. I saw others suffer but I felt sort of exempt and lived the “good life” free from sadness. At times, I was very thankful for this, but other times, I felt left out (a weird thing to think). While my friends had their fair share of tough times, no trials seemed to come my way.
I questioned God but never too intensely because I was more thankful for the blessing of peace than I was hungry to invite suffering. Over the years, I came to understand that God was preparing my heart for the road ahead. Instead of teaching me by trials, he taught me by his Word and through enlightening experiences.
Difficulties show up at your doorstep when you least expect and stay longer then you would like.
I was homeschooled growing up and this contributed to my feeling of being left out. Though I had many close friends through my homeschool community, I always felt I was missing out on some sort of inside fun by not going to public school like the majority of people. No matter how much my mom tried to talk down public schooling, I wanted the public school experience for many years. As I matured in my age and faith in Christ, however, God drastically changed my desires. I recently rediscovered a note I wrote around the age of 10. Scrawled in my 10-year-old handwriting is a very mature thought: “The reason why I can’t go to [public] school is because God wants me to grow STRONG in my faith and then I will be able to resist temptation.” This mindset carried me through the rest of my middle school and high school years. I never again questioned why I was homeschooled and instead an inner pride radiated out of me when someone asked me about it. My heart transformed from shame and embarrassment to confidence and security in who Jesus had made me to be. I found that note when I was cleaning out my closet before moving to college. It spoke to me deeply and showed me that I was ready to jump into the next chapter of my life truly ready for whatever may lie ahead.
As you can see, growing up has spiritually prepared me well for the difficulties I now face. Instead of wallowing in pity and despair, God has lifted me higher than I ever imagined I could reach. God has carried my 10-year-old wisdom and brought it to life in more ways than I ever could have imagined. He strengthens me daily and through this difficult time, I have already learned to rely on Him more than I ever have. Yes, it will continue to be a daily battle, but I am confident that I can overcome this situation with Jesus by my side.