Monday, September 7, 2015

My Time to Fly

Coming to college is a unique experience in life. A time when young people have the chance to see what they're really made of. Every person approaches the college experience in their own way. Bringing with them their own stories of trials and joys. Our stories are precious because each one is authored by God. He is present in every moment whether we acknowledge His prescence or not. As I've met people in this new place I wish I had the time to sit and hear all their stories. 
With that in mind, I considered my own story. Some of you may already know about my long journey from graduating High School to College. But for those of you who don't, this is some of my story. I hope it encourages you as it does me on every remembrance of how God cares for His Children. 

Have you ever thought a person only gets one dose of incredible opportunity in their life? I have. And I thought I'd already used mine up by the time I was looking for a four-year college education. I seemed to be stuck. Caught in a holding pattern of frustrating, numbing circumstance. God had stopped opening doors. Instead He was actively closing them. If ever an opportunity arose I had a sneaking suspicion that God would hold me back, promising again that He had something better planned. It was hard for me to set my heart on anything. I got tired of dreaming of my future. 

Then there was a summer when I risked it all. The air tingled with promise. This was the summer for change for me and my family. I just knew it! Doors were opening for my family and I had set my sights on a door of my own. I was convinced that the college I had chosen was everything I could ever ask for. Everything about it seemed tailored to everything I loved. Surely this was what God had put me on hold for. So I walked in complete confidence that I would go there. Even as I felt resistance I pushed and pushed, refusing to let this door close when I had waited so long to have this chance. I was confused. Why would God be telling me no? I asked him for clarity and He gave it to me. No.
God crushed a dream of mine that summer. It seemed a lost cause to dream after that. I didn’t put my heart into much anymore. 

That’s why it was such a slow, creeping shock to find out that, a whole year later, I was actually getting to go to a college! The admissions process was bumpy but it didn’t bump us off the road. The finances were frightening to think about, but God provided. The transfer of all my previous years of online schooling was a huge hurdle, but it was a hurdle God took us over. I kept expecting God to shut the whole operation down. But He didn’t! Then, before I could catch up to the shock, I was here at college! 
The morning of move-in I was sitting in the hotel room watching the sun creep over the Tennessee mountains. This was it. College was no longer a distant idea but a reality. The feelings I had were hard to identify. There was something deep beneath the surface, roiling there and troubling me. Unlike my previous experiences, I didn't have bolstering dreams to urge me forward. Was I..afraid? If there was even a hint of uneasiness, was this the right thing for me to be doing? What if I had made the wrong choice? My poor, unfaithful heart, that had forsaken hoping was thrust to this edge and told, finally….

This is your time to fly.
Press on toward your high calling! I have ordained this day for you! I am waiting here for you. Be adventurous. Be willing and trusting. I am here. So jump, I have given you your moment to spread your wings and fly.

That is what I felt God whispering to me. This is why so many doors in my past had been closed. This is why He denied me the dreams of the years before. Because He had this place and this time set aside for His own purpose. I don’t know why I was afraid. But I’ve jumped! I’ve spread my wings. I’m trusting God to lift me up when I grow weary and enable me to truly soar.
Being on a college campus is a unique experience, and one I dare not waste. If God has given you a gift, whether it be a talent or a special time in your life, never waste it. Take the leap and prepare for what He has in store. 

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