It is crazy to think of where I was last year... that just one floor below where I am an RA now, I was a freshmen resident experiencing the collegiate life for the first time as well. I did not even want to be an RA until after Christmas haha. These past few months are too much to catch up on now. My once vacant section of hallway is now full of beautiful, unique, and wonderful girls, each whom I love. It's been such a joy to get to know them and be a part of their lives. A few weeks ago I spent hours baking a bazillion pumpkin chocolate chip cookies for them. Haha, first thing like that I have done for them (no wonder, cause it takes so long!) I feel like I have 23 children. Yikes, that is a lot to bake for... :) But it was worth it, and I felt like I finally followed through and accomplished something that has been on my to do list for a while.
Kathryn will be coming back from Zambia in 19 days, and these past couple weeks in particular I have missed her so much. Perhaps it was a combination of stress and exhaustion, and that I have not had much time to be in touch. Friday of Fall break was such a God-send though...we got to Skype for 2 hours!! and the internet didn't cut out once, thank you Lord! It is crazy how much I miss that girl. Picking her up from the airport at Thanksgiving will be such a joyous occasion. When we talked she was just coming off of the hardest night shift in the hospital yet, and hearing her stories were heart-wrenching and sobering. Our 2 hours consisted of much catching up, laughing, and crying together. Her fresh perspective reminded me of how desensitized I have become to the excess in our American culture since being back from Africa myself. That is a frustrating realization, yet quite beneficial at the same time. I think this time hearing it emphasized the focus factor, and how not on track my mind is right now. I was once again reminded of "the North country," that title that my brother gave the passage in Hebrews about fixing your heart and mind on the Kingdom to come. What is my perspective? My decisions, thoughts, actions...what is their root motivation?
Tonight I read yet again another email of hers about an experience with a patient's death and her mourning family. Before heading up to my room, I took something to Emily's room. She talked with me about her struggle with deciding what to do for her cross cultural nursing experience. She mentioned the options and how she currently trying to figure out where God is leading. This caused me to reminisce a lot about how God led me to Kenya two years ago, and I came upstairs and pulled out my Kenya journal. Some things stood out in particular, and as usual I am struck with how incredibly faithful God has been and is...the pages of that diary are filled with the words of a girl being entirely dependent on the Lord for absolutely everything, her struggles, conflicts, discouragement, direction, and experiences in circumstances quite beyond her comfort zone. God's presence and provision is written all over that black leather book.
I was looking for some verses for Emily, yet came across ones that God used to speak to me as well right now.
"For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have" (2 Corinthians 8:12).
"Likewise, we are weak in him, yet by God's power we will live with him to serve you" (2 Corinthians 13:4).
After those verses I had written:
Submit myself to God's authority, resisting the devil and his schemes and footholds. Submit yourself to God and trust Him. Do not fall in the trap of trusting in self. The Lord is all-sufficient, to all.
I cannot quite put into words how perfect the timing of these verses are right now. My struggles lately have been in feeling insufficient, lacking, and weak, and also in seeing how Satan is working to gain footholds I had not previously been noticed.
A few pages later...
Isaiah 45. The Lord makes a beautiful promise to His chosen, His anointed.
- "to open doors before them"
- "to go before you to remove the obstacles of impossibility"
- "to give you treasures of darkness and reveal to you the riches stored in secret places
...All so that you may know that HE is the Lord! "The God of Israel, who summons you by name."
It's crazy that those verses that God highlighted for me then, happen to be the passage he showed me as our theme for this year.
Thank you Lord, for these reminders tonight. Should I ever doubt God's perfect timing?