Yep, “I am 17 going on 18…” and today is my final day of being a “young adult”. Such a scary thought!
Tomorrow I turn 18. Thoughts run through my head like “what am I gonna do after school’s finished?”, “Will I marry soon?”, and “Where will I work?”.
Though they’re all legitimate questions, I gotta keep my head on straight. I find (with myself at least) when I over-think on long-term things I get very clammed up and lack the right mind to intelligently think through things.
The answer that I constantly go back to is found in Romans 8:28, where Paul clearly tells us that God works ALL things together for good for those who are called according to HIS purpose. So I need not worry about anything! (Neither should you!) Though I do find myself worrying often, we all must recognize the lack of trust in God’s sovereignty in our lives when we do. We’re basically saying, “If I repeatedly think enough about this, then I can be in control, not God”.
Though I know some things are legitimately worrisome (a child’s safety for example) we can’t let it dominate us into not trusting Christ with where He’s put us now.
So where has God put me these days? (nostalgia time!…)
Well, through the years I’ve always been blessed with a nice family, very few long-term friends (but the ones I have mean the world to me!), odd-jobs here and there, and generally a “good” life by some standards.
But more specifically, in the past year I’ve learned so much! (still am!)
So I started a year ago with a fairly confused heart (Yep, girl troubles) which providentially led me to who I’m with now, but along the way it was really hard. Trying to let go and move on was really tough (I’m sure many can relate) and reassuring myself I did the right thing was even more difficult. But through it all God taught me the value of balance. Balancing confusion with a godly maturity. Remaining level-headed when things seem to spin out of control.
So Jesus led me through that rough patch a year ago into where I currently attend church. It was really a blessing because of all the things going through my heart. I got involved in the worship team (love electric guitar!), and started (for the first time ever) to attend a formal Bible Study. The Bible study was a particular growth point, because I disagreed in some areas doctrinally (though we do agree on core doctrine) with my Pastor, which in turn helped me solidify my Biblical convictions on many points of doctrine.
Throughout this time (from last October-now) I’ve been going to a nearby college with my Girlfriend and her Father every Thursday evening (during the semesters), where they’re a part of a concert-band (Her playing Flute, her Dad playing trumpet).
Those little trips helped Her Dad to get to know me better, which has helped my relationship with His daughter grow in a biblical, healthy way also. On top of that, my older brother (and best friend) attends that same college, so I get quite a few perks!
Moving on in my year…
So in the summer I signed up for a local christian camp that I had volunteered at the previous two years, where I counseled and was later head-of-staff for a week. This was by far the hardest summer. I had doubts with my current relationship, and hadn’t really gotten over some previous heart issues which eventually led to a break-up a week before training for camp began. So it was a little rough.
But throughout camp God revealed some things about that certain someone who I had seriously doubted before, and showed some very godly (synonymous with attractive) traits that She had grown in that led my heart back to her. So after prayer and intense thought I called up her Dad, arranged to meet in person, and had another talk where everything was explained and I was given permission to pursue His daughter again!
So that summer of camp matured me a lot. It brought out a ton of baggage in my heart to surface, and led my heart to be re-focused on Christ and who He desires me to be. It was the toughest summer of my whole life, but as I was talking to my Head-counselor, it was probably the best summer too. “Best” not by my (happy and fun) standards, but because Jesus led me to be a better man through it. Looking back, that pain and heartache was a deeply needed gift.
So now it’s after summer. Beginning dating (or courting, if you want) again with my girlfriend. Life seemed pretty good, nothing really “wrong”. Had a job, family, some friends, a great girlfriend, and her family.
It’s been pretty much that since then. Though where I was working I had finished all the bee-hive frames in storage, so I gotta wait till He gets more for more work. Still some rough relationship patches, still tough times at home, still very growing experiences, but I gotta be constantly reminding myself of that verse in Romans,
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
So even though this year has been hard, I know it’s for my good. When I turn 18 tomorrow, and with all the things that come with new responsibility, I know who my Lord is.
And He’ll guide me through it all.
Thanks for reading!
I’ll hopefully have an interview with a current missionary-in-training in Tuesday’s post, so make sure to follow if you’d like to be notified of that! Thanks a lot!