Tuesday, January 30, 2007

An Answer to Prayer

My prayer: Lord, please let me know that you are still there, that you are still taking care of me...
Answer: a cinammon dulce latte, a sweet card of encouragement, and the two smiling faces of sweet friends...

Everything is Going to be OK...Right?

So a friend shared this quote with me and I felt like it really spoke to me...
"There are moments in our lives when we find ourselves at a crossroads.  Afraid. Confused.  Without a roadmap.  The choices we make in those moments can define the rest of our days.  Of course, when faced with the unknown, most of us prefer to turn around and go back.  But once in a while people push on to something better.  Something found just beyond the pain of going it alone.  And just beyond the bravery and courage it takes to let someone in.  Or to give someone a second chance.  Something beyond the quiet persistence of a dream.  Because it's only when you're tested, that you truly discover who you are.  And it's only when you're tested, that you discover who you can be.  The person you want to be does exist.  Somewhere on the other side of hard work and faith and belief... and beyond the heartache and fear of what lies ahead."
I would say I am definitely at a crossroads. I feel mine might be more intense...like I am afraid and confused, don't have a roadmap, am in the middle of nowhere blindfolded, with my hands and feet tied behind my back. Oh yeah, and I can't find my socks...(haha- inside joke with my mom.) Ok, so this might be an exaggeration, but I think you get the point. I feel as though I have tried to do the noble thing and push on to something better for a really long time. I feel as though I have been taking the longest test of my life. I am waiting for that "other side." When does the hard work and faith and belief pay off? When do I get to be beyond the heartache and the fear? I know it's there...and this quote reminded me of that. It's somewhere...I am just hoping and praying that it is this side of eternity...
A sweet friend asked me what she could be praying for (in reference to my last entry). The only answer I can give is that I am just feeling everything that my last entry described. I feel as though there was no break between last semester (which was the one from hell), and this one and that I have nothing left to give. I am struggling in my classes...I have literally come to hate school. I am even getting to the point where I don't care anymore. And that is frustrating because that is not like me. But I am struggling to find value in the classes I am in. I am struggling to stay awake in them, struggling just to focus in general. I feel guilty because I have so much to be thankful for. I feel guilty because I should be more excited about my last semester. I just can't seem to muster that excitement. This is more than just normal "Erin-stress." I am worn out, I am exhausted. I literally cried all the way home from SA this weekend because I dreaded so much coming back to all the stress, the schedule, the demands...I am pulled in so many differnet directions and feel as though I might crack or lose it almost every second of the day. Running is not doing enough to relieve the stress. And it makes my stomach upset thinking about having to add the task of finding a job. Which is another source of frustration. I am ready to be out of school...but am not really even excited about finding a new job. Actually...I take that back. I am excited about a new job. It's the process of obtaining that job that puts my stomach in knots.
So there is something wrong in my heart. There is something wrong in my spirit. Maybe "wrong" is too harsh a word. Or maybe it isn't...maybe "unsettled" might fit. I know that this will pass...it's just really hard to endure right now. I know God has a purpose for the season He has me in. I know that He has not forgotten me. I know that He is with me every step of the way. He reminded me of this just in the sweet encouraging words of friends, just in the questions of concern from friends who care about and love me. God is good- He always has been, He always will be. And that reminds me that everything is going to be ok.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Where I Am...and {Thankfully} Where He Always Is

I am weak.
I am empty.
I am frustrated.
I am exhausted.
I am broken.
I am desperate.
I need God to take control...
I AM is strong.
I AM fills my cup to overflowing.
I AM makes my paths straight.
I AM is my rock and my deliverer.
I AM restores my soul.
I AM is sovereign.
I am His. And He is good.
Please pray for me...

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Screaming Out to God

Oh my gosh...I feel as though I am going to hyperventilate. I just finished my first week of classes and I am already ready to quit. No more. I am done. It took every part of my being not to run out of my classes screaming.
Normally at the beginning of the semester, I get a little excited about starting classes...even if it's in a geeky "I like my new pencils and new notebooks" kind of way. This semester? Nothing. I have dreaded this week since I registered. I feel as though I have had no break and that this is just a continuation of last semester, which was p.s. awful. I have never felt this way before in my life and I really don't know what to do with myself. I hate ALL of my classes...I can't even muster a little tiny excitement or "deal with it" attitude for any of them. I think the frustrating part is that I am taking 6 less hours than last semester...but nothing seems any different. I am still going to be just as busy, just as stressed out, just as tired, just as frustrated. Oh, and on top of all those wonderful feelings...I have to look for a job. grrr...
So this is the part where I scream out to God, cry, kick, whatever...because I really have already had a meltdown in the first week. Everything that could go wrong did. Everyone who could have been annoying was. Every situation that I would normally avoid threw itself in my face. I feel so impatient with everything right now and it is driving me crazy!!! I can't even pretend to put on a happy face. I can't even say I will try. I just need to cry and scream to God. Because I literally have no idea what else to do. Because I am not going to make it this semester without Him. At this point, I am not really feeling so confident that I am going to make it with Him....
Everything seems so overwhelming right now. And I am a person that normally can handle a lot. But I think that I have handled a lot for too long. Oh I have said I wanted to quit before. But I have always been kidding or only partly serious. The only thing that is keeping me from quitting at this point is that I have already paid tuition. I should be excited! But I am SO not. I should be enjoying the last ounces of my Baylor experience...but I don't really care at this point. This is so bad! I have never in my entire life NOT wanted to do something so much as I do NOT want to do this semester. I have a feeling this is going to be a long semester.
If you need me, I will be the one lying on my face in the back of the room screaming to God...

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

All I Need

Happy New Year! So we have finally arrived at the year 2007. I have to say it's kind of surreal. I never thought this year would come. You know when you are a kid, college-aged people seem so old. When I was a kid, I remember thinking how I would be 22 when I graduated from college in the year 2007...and that seemed so far away to me. And yet, here I am. I don't feel old. Far from it, actually.  Now that I am here, it doesn't seem like what it would be when I imagined it as a kid. I feel like I should feel older than I really do, though. It's kind of a weird feeling. Anywho...
So what's for me in 2007? No clue. LOL. One more semester in school. Graduation in May. Hopefully a new job. A new life. I feel like I am standing at the base of a huge mountain; I feel overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of changes before me. They are looming in the very near future and it scares the crap out of me. But I am beginning to feel that tiny pinch of excitement about it.  I just have to get to the point where the excitement outweighs the fear. The whole job search thing is too much for me to think about right now, but I know I need to. No one in BEST can believe I haven't even started. Haha. When I think about my personality, I can hardly believe it myself. But 18 hours, group projects, working, leading a community group, Prague nearly killed me last semester...there simply was no time to think about jobs. And over Christmas break, job hunting was the last thing I wanted to be doing after such a hectic semester. I needed time to breathe. But now the new semester is getting ready to start and I need to start thinking about it. I will let you know what God decides to share with me regarding all of that. Somehow, given my past circumstances, I don't think this will be a simple thing. There will be lots of prayer, tears, stress, faith involved.
When I was thinking about new years resolutions, I decided not to have any. Haha. There is logic behind that...why make a resolution only at the beginning of the year? Why only because it's January 1? Why not whenever you feel God poking at you in some area of your life? While I don't have any official resolutions, I still will face this semester as one of new beginnings. My heart's desire practically every day is to spend more time with Him. The other day, I actually woke up with a deep yearning to spend time with Him. The apartment was quiet and I was not rushing off somewhere. In the stillness, I heard God's invitation. And so I spent time with Him thinking about "resolutions" if you will...
I want to ache for God. I want to ache for Him in such a way that I cannot find peace until I spend time with Him. I want to perceive things the way Christ perceives them; I want to think the way Christ would think; I want to do what Christ would do. I want to fulfill my calling- to become an "everlasting splendor." I long for the kind of peace and joy that characterizes the lives of seasoned and godly Christians. I want to become the woman God created me to be. I want God to show me this semester what He had in mind when He created me. I want to be content with where God has me. I want to be content with it being just me and God. I want to be able to say with complete honesty and sincerity that He is all I need.
Every semester, God is faithful to give me a song that is my "semester song." It is one that I strive to live my life by that semester. Ever faithful, this is what He has provided for me:
When the day is done
And there’s no one else around
While I’m lying here in bed
You’re in my heart, You’re in my head
You’re all I need
You’re all I need
There are a million voices
Calling out my name
You’re the one I want to hear
So make the others disappear
You’re all I need
You’re all I need
You are all I need when I’m surrounded
You are all I need if I’m by myself
Fill me when I’m empty
There is nothing else
You’re all I need
When the morning comes
And Your mercy is renewed
There’s a fire in my bones
I’m not afraid to go alone
You’re all I need
You’re all I need
The sun on my face
I hear you whisper loud
Still the God who opens seas
Every flower, even me
You’re all I need
You’re all I need
You are all I need when I’m surrounded
You are all I need if I’m by myself
Fill me when I’m empty
There is nothing else
You’re all I need
He is all I need...
Currently Reading: The Life You've Always Wanted, by John Ortberg