Okay y’all. So much has happened in my life that I’m going to have to split up this Sweet Tea post into three parts…
Part 1 is going to consist of the section My Life because, like I said, so much has been happening that this part is going to be pretty long.
Part 2 will contain Tunes, The Word, and Threads.
And finally, Part 3 will be about Create!, What I’m Watching, and Here&Now.
All right! Let’s get this post going!
My Life (hang on tight! This is gonna be a little lengthy.)
Well, why has it been so long since I’ve blogged? One word: COLLEGE. But that one word has encompassed so many areas of my life; areas that I’ve really been struggling with these past few months. Frankly, this semester has been one of the hardest times of my life.
So, let’s go through each part, shall we? And bear with me, it’s gonna sound like a lot of complaining within each part, but at the end, I’m gonna show you how good God is.
Spiritually, I’ve felt just very distant from God. I’ve had to be reminded that the problem was me because God hasn’t gone anywhere. And I’ve been so convicted by the sermon series that’s being taught at my church called War and Peace as we study 1 Samuel. I hadn’t read my Bible in a while, so I began reading it again. But even then I felt like I wasn’t getting anything out of my reading. Was my spirit just not in it? But why wasn’t I? I yearned to be closer to God, to feel His presence and to have that solid trust in Him. Why was I faltering so?
That was another thing. Bria reminded me that just because I couldn’t feel anything, didn’t mean that God wasn’t present and that His Spirit wasn’t working within me. It was so hard though, to go day-to-day without being sure that my spiritual life was solid. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to my room and cried and wondered where God was…but then remembered my reminders from my friends and re-asked my question: “God, where am I???”
School-wise it’s just been a struggle. I went into this year thinking that I had everything down: that I knew how to study and get things accomplished ahead of time and that I’d finally be able to get to sleep early. Psh. Yeah, right. I completely overestimated my abilities to get through this semester, and let’s just say, school is kickin’ my butt!!!
I began wanting to minor in art (so right now I’m taking Drawing 1) and it’s been a challenge. I’ve learned a lot of things, and my projects have come back with decent grades. But I just felt exhausted to actually draw. Sure, I was learning the correct rules on how to shade things and have the right value in them. But the more time I spent on my drawing projects, the more frustrated with it I became. I liked art because of the creativity of it, not because of strict rules and guidelines. And yes, I understood that there needed to be rules because we had to get graded somehow, but I didn’t want my experiences in art to rely on those rules.
I’m taking my grandpa’s General Psychology class, and loving it! Okay, at first, I underestimated how much work I had to put into it, and sorta got it handed to me on the first couple of tests. The third test, though, I got an A+ because I worked harder to obtain it. Now, the test I just took yesterday…we’ll see about that one. It came so quickly that I had no time to prepare myself. I actually should be reading some of the psych chapters now instead of blogging. Oh well. It’s been a while, and I miss blogging.
My rat project in gen. psych has been a pain in the butt ever since we got assigned those white, furry critters. And, okay, I will admit that it’s my fault that I’ve procrastinated on it. But like I said before, other areas of my life had been sort of crippling too. So, after Grandpa said that all of us were behind on our rat projects, some of us started to take the initiative and finally work on it. And now, especially since it’s about a week and a half or two weeks until Thanksgiving Break (and the project is due before Thanksgiving Break), EVERYONE is in the rat lab working on it. More frustration that had piled on top of my art frustration…
THEN I’m taking a U.S. History to 1877 class to fulfill a humanities requirement. I don’t even need it for my major and I’m taking it. You’d think it’d be easy, right, since it’s U.S. History and ya know, I have kinda lived in America my whole life and have studied this subject before. Y’all. This class is trying to epic-ly fail my life right now. I got a C on the first test and a D on the second. I missed a quiz that cost a pretty good amount of points toward my grade (how? I don’t know.) And so now I have an overall average of probably a D or maybe I’m failing the class. I NEED a C. So, I had to meet with my professor, and I’ll be meeting with him again next week. Oh boy.
I will say though that I thought I failed that second test. I’d barely studied for it (because I had a paper due on the same day), and the morning of the test, I woke up 8 minutes before the test began, threw on clothes, barely got my hair looking decent, and ran to get into the classroom before he handed out the tests. Got there just in time…but barely knew a thing on that test. And the essay question? SMH.
My American Literature and Doctrine 1 classes seem to be manageable. I’ve improved in both classes, in my writing and in my test taking. So, I’ve at least been able to handle those things a bit better.
Socially?…Let’s not even go there. After so many lessons learned, and realizing that most of my problems were being caused by knowing other people’s business, I’ve done a better job at minding my own business. If people want to tell me things, that’s fine. But I will not be prying into anybody’s life just so I can be a part of what they’re going through and to have privileged information. Nope. I’m done playing that game.
And what do you know? After I made that decision, I’ve been pretty care-free in my social life.
“What’s going on with so-and-so?” No clue, you should ask them.
“Hey, did you hear about…?” Nope, I sure didn’t, and I really don’t want to.
“Oh my gosh, you won’t believe what I just saw…” Yeah, I probably won’t because I’d rather 1. see it for myself or 2. not see it at all.
WHEW. MY LIFE IN GIANT, NASTY BROWN PAPER BAG.
NOW…lemme tell y’all how FAITHFUL GOD IS.
God has been so gracious and merciful to me in giving me family and friends whom I can go to to cry about my problems and express my frustrations. Yes, I know that I’m supposed to go to God first, and that was such a hard thing for me to do because I felt like I was so distant from Him. But He spoke so clearly through friends like Bria and Ellie and family, like Pa. They prayed for me, read Scripture to me, and just walked with me to help me tackle my struggles. I can’t tell you how many people have hugged me, written me sweet notes, given me cookies to cheer me up, and told me that they’ve been praying for me. I’ve been so blessed through my brothers- and sisters-in-Christ, and honestly, I haven’t really realized it until now.
Remember when I said that I’ve been convicted of sermons that I’ve heard at my church? Well, thankfully, I’d been taking notes, so I have these sermon notes to remind me of the wonderful messages that have been spoken to me through this rough time in my life. And I was able to finally meet the pastor of my church and he prayed with me and even asked me the next week how the past week went for me. So blessed by him.
And I’ve been sincerely praying and asking God to change my heart and to fill this emptiness that I’ve been feeling for the past few months. Things still feel weird to me right now, but because I’m relying more on God to get me through the day (and by taking things one day at a time), it’s okay that things are still a little weird. I think it’s just because I’m still in a transition period. A growing period.
My rat project? Y’all, last night, I went in to attempt Exercise 2 of the project (reluctantly, but willingly) and I was able to finish Exercises 2 and 3 of my project!!! WHICH MEANS I ONLY HAVE ONE MORE EXERCISE TO GO AND I’LL BE DONE!!!! Well, not completely done because we have a pizza and graphing party next Tuesday to get our lab reports all sorted out. THEN I’ll be done. You have no idea how relieved I am that I am more than halfway done with that rat project. It’s been the ONE THING that I’ve been concerned about when it came time for Thanksgiving Break. I was afraid my parents would ask how my rat project went, and I’d be embarrassed as Grandpa and I both explained that I didn’t finish it. Gahh!! But I’m now confident that, with hard work and determination, I can get this project done!
And even socially, things are looking up. A friend of mine, whom I haven’t really connected with so well this semester, is gonna hangout with me soon. And I thank God that, even though there hasn’t been much interaction with this person, He’s made it evident that there’s still a friendship there. Friendship is SO MUCH MORE than hanging out (as I’ve been told before). It’s about investing in people you care about. It’s about continuously forgiving a friend when they mess up because that’s what we are called to do. We’re called to love unconditionally, just as Christ loves us unconditionally.
I’m so thankful for all that God has taught me. Yes, this semester has been one rocky road, but I sincerely believe that every lesson that I’ve been taught has only made me stronger. I’m so excited for the upcoming parts of this Sweet Tea post so I can tell you which Scriptures and tunes have really encouraged me and have brought me through some breakdowns and dark places!
I pray that all is well with y’all! I’m so sorry that it’s been a dry season for blogging! If any of y’all are going through a hard time, TAKE HEART! I hope that what I’ve been going through has encouraged y’all that GOD IS STILL WITH YOU. He’s waiting for you to turn to Him and say, “Lord, I can’t do this alone anymore. I surrender.”
And how many posts have you read from me that have repeated this very lesson? There’s been a lot, haha. But that just proves how much I am just like Israel, God’s chosen people. I constantly go back and forth, from trusting God entirely, to trusting in my own abilities. We criticize the Israel of the Bible so much, when we should really be humbled because they are a perfect picture of who we are as Christians today. And Christ is so willing to love us unconditionally. To forgive us over and over again, because He loves us.
Love y’all so much! Praying for y’all! Expect another post SOON! Sweet Tea #3…Part 2 TOMORROW!!! 😀
*~.Mishy.~* (^^) ❤