Study, write paper, type notes, eat, sleep, sit in class, work, study, write paper, type notes, eat, sleep. That is my life these days. It’s crazy and stressful, but I can’t deny the fact that I love the college life. I love the mess of trying to get papers finished in time and trying to get in little pieces of studying every chance I can. Needless to say, it is CHAOS. So. my way of lessening the stress is to make to-do lists and plan ahead. I know now, that God just laughs every time I get out my calendar or begin writing a new list. See, He’s been teaching something huge and I’ve been completely missing the main, crucial point!
Tonight, I typed up 15 pages of notes, studied for my World Geography exam, and got most of my 4 page paper written (I know, 4 pages is nothing..but it’s a psych paper on dreams…give me some grace!). I took a break a while ago to boil some water and make some of my favorite studying mint green tea. I was into the 4th page of my paper, and finally figured something out. It was a definite “Ah-hah!” moment, and as I got a little bit excited, I knocked over the little bit of tea I had left and it went EVERYWHERE. Not only did it spill in my lap (and make me feel like I peed myself) but it went on my dream article notes, my psych folder and completely soaked my desk calendar. Everything I was okay with, until I saw my calendar. That is when I freaked! Usually things like this are expected and I simply shake my head and smile to/at myself. But, when I saw that my calendar, my plans for the next 5 months were destroyed…it wasn’t so funny anymore. I grabbed a towel out of my hamper and began wiping away the tea, but I knew that my calendar was now garbage. I tossed it in the trash and mindlessly cleaned up the rest of the tea.
I got online and told my close friend, Maddie, what had happened, knowing she would understand that it would kill my stress-level. As I was explaining it to her, I had, yet another, “ah-hah!” moment. God has been trying to drill this through my thick head for a few weeks now and I just haven’t been completely open to it. I have been working hard on getting a graduation plan in place, so that way I can graduate within 3 years from now and then be in Honduras long-term. I have had people telling me that I belong here right now, I have had God giving me very obvious signals that He’s not done with me here and I have had those gut-deep feelings that God has so much more to teach me in Ohio, but I didn’t want to accept it entirely.
I’ve been working so hard on being present, and today as I drove home from helping at my mom’s office, God gave me this thought as I rambled off my frustrations to Him about trying so hard to be present. “Stop trying to be present, and just be.” I shook my head. My next thought was that there was no way that could work, even though my heart knew it was true. Anyways, all of this to explain that I have been planning my tomorrows away and neglecting to turn to my Father and ask for his wisdom, counsel and direction. So, although I’m going to go buy a new desk calendar, and write down due dates for school, and probably plan other things, I’m going to begin pushing myself to turn to God first and foremost.
What was so ironic about the tea being spilled all over my calendar, is that that was exactly what God is doing to my plans (yes, he was pouring tea on my plans). I keep planning and He continues to look down on me, shaking his head with a tight smirk on his face. He was waiting for me to figure it out myself. He had tried using other people, different situations and even speaking into my heart with his own voice, but I continued to disregard it all. Tonight, when my stress-level climbed as I saw my plans covered in tea, God grabbed my heart and shook it a little.
I now understand that I can make plans all I want, but God has bigger and better ones, and that I need to seek Him before I begin planning. I love to organize, plan and schedule, but I also love God and desire for my heart to be more and more like Jesus’ every day. That’s what being a Christian, a Christ-follower, is about..isn’t it?
So, tonight I surrender my plans to the Lord and trust that He will come through and show me new things, teach my heart to desire His, and string me along in His wonderful plan for my life.
Have a great, plan-free night!
“Jesus said, ‘Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God and trust also in me.'” John 14:1