The Lord your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as he did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes, and in the wilderness. There you saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place. Deuteronomy 1:30-31 NIV
Wow this year has been crazy and so busy! But it has been oh so good! Throughout all of the ups and downs of this year I have learned so much. I have seen God showing up for me everyday and I have been in awe of what He has done for me without me even realizing it. He has fought battles for me, been in the fire with me, danced with me in the valleys, and carried me through the deserts. Looking back on my junior year, I can start to understand what He has been doing within me. I can see that He strengthened my faith and made me bolder in my love for other people. He grew my dependence on Him and my desire to do everything for His glory.
My perspective has turned upwards towards His Kingdom, towards loving others like He does. I made the powerful prayer of “Lord break my heart for what breaks yours and help me run after the broken and hurting so that they can glimpse you through me”. And wow!! He sure answered that one. I have found that my love has deepened and that I am more willing to follow where He leads me even if it’s scary and I don’t understand it. I have fully invited God into every aspect of my life. And because of that, I have truly felt like I am on the path that God has for me; that I am actively pursuing His plan.
Although this year has been beautiful, I wouldn’t have been able to get to this point in my faith if I hadn’t experienced the trials of these past years. I haven’t been strong all of the time in the slightest, and it has been difficult to deal with other people’s expectations for me. I had to recognize my weakness so that God could fill it with His strength and carry me through the places that I could not go on my own.
I think that I have been carried more than not throughout these past 3 years. Dealing with my injury has been a heavy trial and there have been many times where I‘ve felt like all I could do was run to God. And when I do that, He scoops me up into His beautiful strong arms and carries me where I cannot go alone. I think that the times when I’ve seen only one set of footprints in the sand were the times when I was not the one walking. And that is one of the most beautiful truths that we can ever know; that we are not alone and that we are being carried through the waves. Learning this truth early on and truly understanding it has helped me make it through the storms with a smile on my face and joy in my heart.
People have told me that my perspective on everything has been inspiringly positive and that I have maintained an optimistic outlook throughout my battles. But they haven’t seen my weakness and they don’t truly know how much God has been carrying me through it all. They haven’t seen my breakdowns, my frustration, or my silent tears. But God has. He has seen it all and He knows my heart. He has held onto me through everything and I know that no matter what happens, God will never let me go.
This is why I share my story. I know what it’s like to be broken and hurting, to go through grief and loss, to be in pain. But I also know what it’s like to be loved by the Creator of the Universe, by my Heavenly Father. I know what it’s like to be loved despite my faults and through my pain. I know what it’s like to be filled with strength that is not my own. I know what it’s like to be carried through the storm. I share my story because it is God who deserves the Glory. My positive attitude and joy is not from within myself. It’s from God.