If I close my eyes and think really hard, I’m in another time. I’m not in my cramped, fluorescently lit dorm room, and I can’t hear the power plant through my open windows. I’m young and I’m in MY room surrounded by books and dreams, nature outside my window. I felt like a princess locked away in a dungeon back then, and now I’d give anything to go back to it. I’d give anything to hear my mom call up for me to “come downstairs and be social”. Now, I’m on the 7th floor of Mark Twain completely, utterly alone. No one is calling for me to come out, and I don’t think I will using my own free will either.
Today wasn’t the best day, and I didn’t know what I was going to write for day 4 of my 30 Day Challenge. I thought I might skip documenting it, actually. I have had one thing on my mind, one thing I can’t do anything about, and my patience is really being tested. I don’t know where God is in that area of my life.
Nevertheless, I woke up and spent time with the Lord, and I read so much truth in 1 Timothy 4:12-16, “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you. Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.”
Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young… Set an example… Devote yourself to teaching… Do not neglect your gift… Give yourself wholly to these matters so that everyone may see your progress… Persevere.
Persevere. Persevere. Persevere.
If you’ve ever wondered if it’s possible to see your life written in Bible verses, it is. That’s what just happened to me. It took remembering the verses from this morning, but at 9:40 tonight, I figured it out. Today, even though I was too focused on my earthly problems to see it, God told me what He created me for.
It’s only fair to continue talking about my not so great day because, believe or not, it did have a happy ending. I went to class and the gym, listening to K-Love and desperately searching for answers to what I cannot solve myself.
Tonight was one of those special Friday nights I got to babysit at The Crossing, and I’ll admit that when I arrived, my mind was still elsewhere. However, I knew the kids would comfort me, and they did. In my first few moments there, two of them actually walked over to me with a toy hammer and a toy iron to “fix” me. I smiled to myself because Lord knows I need to be fixed.
And shortly after that humbling moment, a moment in which I realized that children do make me who I am supposed to be, the room was chaos. Toys and stickers and play dough were scattered all over like glitter. And I’ll admit that made me irritable (I also realized that I will probably become that anal teacher who’s classroom is always organized and spotless, even if it means I stay at work past dinner). But God planned that because the two other sitters and I had to stay a little longer to clean up, and in that time we realized that with all of the chaos, we never even got each others names.
That’s how I met Effie Barba. I hardly know anything about Effie, besides the fact that she goes to The Crossing, likes kids and is a self-published author, but hey, that’s enough for me to say that I like her. I hope life will bring us together again someday (I didn’t have the courage to mention to her that Columbia is only a small stop on my journey, with a little more than two months until its end), but if it doesn’t, I won’t ever forget what she told me about why she writes and Who she writes for. After all of the words and the money and the time, if one person finds Jesus because of something she wrote, it will all be worth it. Effie, I feel the exact same way.
And so, I guess you could say my not so great day ended up being pretty satisfying. K-Love’s daily verse also ties into what Effie and I have been called to do. 1 Chronicles 16:24 says, “Publish His glorious deeds among the nations. Tell everyone about the amazing things He does.” That’s exactly what I’m doing. Finally.
And if you’re wondering how this day is going to end for me, I’ll tell you: I’m a writer and hopeless romantic “home alone” on a Friday night, so I can guarantee you that as soon as I post this, I’ll end up teary eyed watching, writing or reading something that provokes every emotion I have. That’s just what people like me do, and I’ll let you in on a secret, we don’t want it any other way. I’ve tried to live my life differently, but I don’t love anything like I love a good, heartfelt tale.
Check out Effie’s blog at myglorytoglory.com!