Saturday, August 1, 2009
Taking the long way around...
Once again, it's been way too long since I've posted. Here's what's been going on inside my head:
- Technically my internship is over. However, I already have an appoinment for Monday... I didn't get everything done that was asked of me or that I had intended to do. There are fire escape routes that never got posted and room signs that never got hung. I also wanted to help with cirriculum and while I picked up some books, I didn't really do anything super worthwhile. I just got too busy with other things. As I'm writing this I realize it sounds negative, but really I'm very happy with my work this summer. I feel like the church accomplished many significant feats by the grace of God. However I am reminded of the way that in the Kingdom, the work is never through. There are always people to be helped, messes to be cleaned up, and people will still need to know where to run in the case of fire (both literally and figuratively). And yet God guides the work of our hands to be in places at times with people all so we can share his love. So I'm not really worried about the things I didn't do, I'm more excited about the possiblities God has for the work I've done here. Besides, my boss is on Sabbatical for a month. Whatever I didn't do, Ill be long gone before he notices. :-) (Love you uncle Kirk)
- When you choose a PhD program you are sort of choosing what you want to be an expert in. I have come to realize that I'm not exactly sure what that answer is for me just yet. However, I do know that I love New Orleans. I love being here, I love the people, the culture, the food. I even love the potholes and red tape at City Hall (well I don't really but I can appreciate it's uniquley New Orleans factor..) So my new plan is to make plans to come back here. Maybe I'll work on a PhD at one of the many schools in town or maybe I'll get a job. But for now, it just seems like that's the right thing to do. I am also the most fickle person in the world about my life plan so this could change, but at least for now I think I need to stop trying to figure out the answer to the monumentally hard questions and remember what I know. I always feel like life should be leading up to something big, like there's some big epiphany or meaning or finding yourself moment when you realize what you want from yourself and your realtionships and your career ect. But it just isnt that way. Life is just life, meant to be lived abundantly if I remember right (John 10:10?) So my new goal is to do just that.
- I have spent the summer with people I absolutely love. I live with wonderful family who treats me like their own daughter. I have been able to see my parents several times. I've gotten to hang out with really fun church people and have even made a few new friends. Despite all of these true statements all summer Satan has just been eating away at me with lonliness. I've always tried to be so sensible about my heart, and I kind of hate learning that matters of the heart aren't always sesible. Most girls I know have a "thing". They are mysterious or artistic, strickingly beuatiful or especially nice, they love the outdoors or they tell great jokes, they're well spoken or irresistably coy. I don't know for sure, but the way I see it, I'm just an ordinary girl. I'm not the smartest, or the most fun. I'm certainly not the prettiest or even the nicest. Ordinary is ok with me, I even like it most days. But as the Devil would have it, there is that voice in the back of my head shouting at me "YOU WILL NEVER BE GOOD ENOUGH!" And for whatever reason, as of lately I have trouble quieting it. And yet "I am certain that God, who began a good work within me, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns (Phil 1:6)." So until the day comes when he's finished with me, I'm praying that God teaches me to not only quiet that voice but replace it with His voice that says "You're already good enough!"
- I have been working with a girl in the youth group here to get her into a program that would be an amazing opportunity for her. I want her to get in more than anything. She is so good: she's smart and funny and she has so much life in her- she has the Spirit, and she doesn't even know it. The program would provide her so many opportunities that she will never have in her current situation. We have been filling out paper work and taking tests and meeting with program directors and going on visits for a few weeks. The other day I was driving home from a meeting with the program director and I couldn't stop worrying about whether she'll get in or not. I was so stressed out about it, and then I realized I was trying to totally do it on my own. I was not trusting God at all about it, which is crazy really because it is only by His grace that any of it was working out anyway- I could explain it but it would take too much time, just take my word for it. So right then I prayed about the whole thing, about the girl and her family and the program and the fact that I'm hard headed and wasn't trusting. For the first time in a very long time I put it in his hands. I still don't know how it's going to turn out. We have another appointment monday and the comittee has to meet after that, but whatever happens will happen- and just like I said before "I am certain that, who began a good work within her, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns." When I saw her next it was to go and take a big test at a well known private high school in town. She was nervous and we were talking on the way over there about how she was feeling. I decided to tell her about what I had realized in the car the day before, and she looked over at me and said "Miss Shannon, God's been taking care of me all along. I know its going to be fine... But I still really really want to get in!" Then as I pulled up to the school she suggested we pray about her test before she go in. I just laughed and said of course and wondered why I didn't think of that...