There’s been a common theme running through the week that I want to share. The thoughts will be brief, because I’m currently procrastinating on studying for Statistics. It’s finals week, and the wear of months of hard work is beginning to show. I didn’t realize how mentally draining college can be. I’m still trying to figure out how this whole adult thing works. Emily and I have been going through random moments of laughter to crying, from extreme joy to cynicism, and from rolling on the floor to dancing on desks. The best way to describe this week would be a “beautiful mess.” We’ve been asked “how are you always so put together?!” It’s Jesus, man, it’s Jesus.
Finals week has held some of the best and worst moments of the past semester. The break from classes has given time for shopping and cooking and spontaneous adventures. The stress has brought us to new lows. But through it all, I’ve felt intensely close to the people around me.
Last night we celebrated the end of the semester with the traditional Yule Log ceremony. After all the joyous formalities (such as President Reveley reading How the Grinch Stole Christmas), the students lined up to throw a sprig of holly into a gleaming fire. “We throw the holly sprig into the Yule log to celebrate the disappearance of your troubles and the renewal of the new year.” As the holly burned, so did the worries of 2014 (symbolically, of course).
To be quite honest though, I’m sad to see 2014 go. There have been many rough moments, but looking back, the blessings stand out most clearly in my mind. Each time I thought no new adventures could be in store, they were. Each time I thought I couldn’t be happier, I was. Life just gets better and better. This week could not have been a more wonderful ending to my first semester at college. I felt so loved, warm, and joyful. My heart overflowed with happiness.
I don’t want this season to end.
But then I got an email this week that concluded with “the best is yet to come.” And today at church, the pastor said that as we go into the holiday season and head into break, remember that God has more to show us. He encouraged us to expect new things to be revealed. He reminded us that life keeps getting better and better. Those words spoke right to my heart.
Life doesn’t end with one good season. God offers more and more and more.
Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits…” (Psalm 68:19, KJV)
Not sometimes, not only in particular seasons — every day. They don’t stop. We simply have to expect them. Right beside my bed, I have written, “When is God going to blow my mind?” It’s a reminder to look for God’s blessings, aka God-gazing.
And when we mess up, and when life is tough, hold tight to this truth…
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamantations 3:22-23, ESV)
Yes, I know it’s not the end of 2014 yet. There are still two more weeks to enjoy! But if you start getting discouraged or feeling regret at the passing of time, remember what C.S. Lewis wrote..
The BEST is yet to come!
– – Phebe