Recess Week // Midterm Reflection

It’s been half a semester. Yes, it’s that fast, I’m starting to wonder where the first 6 weeks went. It was like a blitzkrieg in some ways more than one. I guess God answered my prayer when I asked to be pulled out of my comfort zone. I really got thrown so far out I had to come crawling back at times. I felt emotions I hadn’t felt in a long while during these 6 weeks.

I suppose the first thing I learnt is that I don’t understand people as I thought I did. I assumed that everyone would get me and understand me and that in turn I would be able to understand them and there would be a mutual understanding. The thing that weighs heavily on my mind and heart till today is that I may not have understood people as they would have wanted me to and instead I imposed my assumptions and mindset on them and that in turn, hurt them. I felt really bad about this as I thought about how I could have hurt people and unknowingly so. To be honest, I came to acknowledge that yes I was a fast, intense, and occasionally impulsive person. But I did not know that this was a problem for others, that perhaps they weren’t able to actually keep up, and I ignored that completely. I guess it’s still a learning process to understand that what my strengths are may exactly be someone else’s weaknesses and to grow as a leader, a person and a friend, I must be able to appreciate the struggles of others and adapt myself to them. In this way, I will be able to bring out the best in them without pushing them too hard and also without hurting them and making them feel inferior. I have a long way to go to improve in this aspect but hopefully I will learn it.

The next thing that happened this half of the semester was that God taught me sacrifice by making the people around me go through hard times. Making me go through hard times is one thing, I’ll probably respond by gritting my teeth and push on, and even if I broke halfway I’d still haul my broken limbs down the finishing line and crawl past. But when the people dearest to me that are around me are hurt or going through hard times, I start to realise I cannot help them even though I try, for various reasons, whether it is because it is just not something I can assist with, or because circumstances do not permit me to help them. But in these cases, I am forced and compelled to look to God in prayer. These 6 weeks I have to say, God was real-er than ever, there were nights I just lay on my bed and cried because I had no idea what was going on, I was tired of helping or trying to and failing, I was tired inside because the more I tried the more I failed (and either got pushed away or had to back off), and then I just felt exhausted inside, so drained deep in my soul. I think the only time I felt living waters pour over my soul was really when I went back to His Word and to seek Him. It was when I surrendered that I realised God led me step by step to do things in an unconventional way. He showed me that trusting Him started by being weak, being completely helpless and down and out and that was the only time I knew that I could not do anything – and then I looked to Him and He came to my help. So it became real because the next time I wanted to do the same thing, I tried gingerly to pray, not knowing if it would happen and it did. He proved to me that He was the helper of the weak, the One who brings those who fall up, ‘for when I am weak,then I am strong’. In trusting Him and giving more when I could not for His cause, He rewarded me with strength, blessings and joy. I am content.

I also started to also see the gap between Christian life and school life close, I have always asked God to show me that these two were not separate worlds, that there would be some form of link. I saw it these 6 weeks. I take 20th Century Lit, Postcolonial Lit, Feminism, Ancient Western Political Theory, and Intro to Philosophy. I came to understand what it really meant when I am brought up in conservative doctrines and tenets and then I get another framework of thought thrown at me and immediately there’s this natural repulsion that comes out of me when I realise that it is in direct opposition to what I learnt as a child. I get told in class that everything is a social construct, I mean sure, it is but a postmodernist point of view, and people be like ‘oh you don’t have to be so serious about it’ (yeah even that’s a POMO point of view) but then it is different and it is not just something that you feel the difference in the intellectual aspect but it is a lifestyle, a way of thinking, an attitude toward the world. oh well. I’m still negotiating those boundaries but God please give me grace to stay sound and faithful.

Lastly, these 6 weeks I had to learn to live my profession of faith. If I was serious about bringing people to the Lord then I had to live it out in my life. I was compelled to change certain behaviours that I strongly didn’t want to change because now I realised that it wasn’t just about me but that it was also about those around me. I made some changes that are hopefully for the better. I struggle daily but I need grace to be strong and act on those little convictions, praying that He will give me more. In my weekly Bible studies, I feel His love and grace shining on me, I feel His approval and I want to carry on, it is ironic how it seems like I’m spending more time on spiritual things and yet I find I rely more and more on the never ending Source of strength, my Saviour. I am grateful for the pain, for the lessons.

Just to end, let me quote Blessings by Laura Story

‘Cause what if your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near

What if my greatest disappointments or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are your mercies in disguise

P.S. Recess week was wonderful, I was behind/in front of the camera for 4/5 days and I loved it, so much. Thank you all who were a part of that rest.

P.P.S It seems God approves this post, as I typed this last sentence, Blessings comes on in my shuffled playlist hehe

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