Monday, June 1, 2015

i wrote this weeks ago but never got around to posting it

Yesterday my sister and I sat opposite each other in a Panera Bread booth and reflected on the last eight months of Bible college. I would like to say that I enjoyed every last minute of my year at the Bible Institute, but I didn't. It was hard. It hurt. Sometimes, I felt as if I hated everything about it.

But I would do it all over again. 
It's what God had for me this year. 

When I first arrived at the "BI" in September, I thought I was going to charge through the year and take it down like a hunter would a weaker prey. I was going to secure a slot on the praise band, I was going to get a perfect 4.0 GPA, and I would basically coast through the year until things got tough during the mandatory exit requirement, being a summer camp counselor to young girls for eight consecutive (and exhausting) weeks.

As it turns out, I was 50 shades of INCORRECT.

I came into this Bible Institute year with a lot of pride and selfishness. I still struggle with these things, and know I probably always will, at least to some degree. But upon my arrival, I really thought I was going to be able to tackle this year on my own. Of course, God used my own self-confidence to break me. One of the passages that have become my own this year is one of weakness:

"But He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong." ~ 2nd Corinthians 12:9-10

This year has been all about learning to rely on Christ. I'm so prideful! I think that I know exactly what God is going to do with my life, and I think I can tell Him exactly how He should do it. And then He turns around and does the opposite. He is always surprising me with blessings out of the blue, and with unexpected twists in my path. It's tough, because I want things my way, and I want to be in control. But His ways are better. 

This year I've also learned to set aside legalistic ways. I used to think that if I wasn't reading my Bible every day or praying regularly, that God was looking down on me with some kind of dissatisfied disgust. I thought that His favor for me was based upon my performance. But we are all sinners, and we all fall short. And I don't stop sinning just because I'm saved! So if I think that I've got to impress God, I'm going to be miserable. I fail Him, myself and others daily. 

But He gives us more grace.

"When we were overwhelmed by sins, You forgave our transgressions." ~ Psalm 65:3

I came to the Bible Institute thinking that I had it all together. I thought I could rely on myself, but now I see I can only ever rely on all that Christ is. And that's exactly what I'm going to have to do as a camp counselor in just five short days. EGAD!

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Go with grace.