I’ve officially decided to stop apologizing for how late I am with my blog post updates. They’ll happen when they happen. And this one is happening now.
On May 13 I officially finished my first full year at Southeastern University. This past semester has been one of the most personally challenging semesters of my college career.
Wow. I don’t even know where to begin. If I get on too much of a roll, you’ll never want to read the entirety of this post because it’ll be a Harry Potter book long.
Speaking of which, I was told I look like Harry Potter by some 10th grade Cambodian boys, which is funny because I was told the same thing by some friends when I was in India. And speaking of Cambodia, you’ll hear about some of that in the next post.
So, rewinding. I’m dating a totes fab girl named Amelia. You know this. But let me tell you, this relationship is one of the most challenging, rewarding, and Christ-led relationships I have ever had. I’m loving every minute of this adventure with her and she has been so gracious and forgiving in dealing with my faults and shortcomings.
This semester, I “fell off the tracks”. I mean, I did not take care of myself spiritually, and as a result, ran myself into the ground–physically, emotionally, spiritually, mentally. About halfway through the semester, I felt so far away from God that I couldn’t even bring myself to pray or open up my Bible. I refused to do schoolwork and I refused to respond to text messages asking about me. Needless to say, not a healthy place to be. I decided to skip a day of classes and go home for some much needed rest and time spent alone with God.
That day spent reading my Bible by my pool at home was the rest I had been needing for so long.
But when I came back to school the next day, I knew I needed to make changes. Changes in my habits so that I wouldn’t go back to that state of mind and being again. And there were repercussions in my relationships because of my little insanity stint. I am so thankful that I am His and He is mine, because if I was mine I wouldn’t have been able to restore my spiritual health and sanity.
God is so good in how He cares for us. He has put some phenomenal people into my life (I can’t wait to tell you about the people with me here in Cambodia!) and these people have challenged me and encouraged me to pursue Christ with my whole heart. I became determined to develop healthy spiritual habits–READ YOUR BIBLE–and I re-realized the importance of my relationship with God in how it affects every other area of my life.
Also, sin is a big deal. It’s not a little deal. It’s not something that you can brush over and forget about because sin is the worst part of us and it likes to worm its way into the most inconvenient of situations. Sin has consequences and even if you don’t see the consequences yet, they’re coming. And, friends who are in relationships, YOUR SIN DOESN’T JUST AFFECT YOU ANYMORE.
Seems like that should be obvious but it wasn’t to me. So I’m not gonna assume it’s obvious to you. Don’t deceive yourself into thinking that your sin–whatever it may be–won’t affect your significant other. It will and a hard conversation (or two, or three) is coming your way.
Don’t be scared of them though. The hard conversations are where the most growth happens. Especially if you’re honest. Friends, honesty in relationships is the BEST THING EVER. Honesty, transparency, and authenticity. Switch a few of the letters around and you have HAT. Make sure you’re wearing your HAT in your relationships.
Alright, we can forget that acronym happened.
I’m going to wrap this up now, even though this is only a slice of my past semester. Academically, I had a FANTASTIC semester. I love my education classes and I’m so pumped to be a teacher. I’ve formed some new friendships and I had the opportunity to do cool things like be in a horn section of a funk band, play in the live band for SEU’s tv show, write the film score for a student short film, get a new job as a tutor on campus, and rediscover my passion for music composition.
Over the next couple days, weeks, months, I’ll be playing in three weddings this summer, finishing an amazing journey in Cambodia, returning to SEU for my senior year, and VISITING PA OVER THANKSGIVING BREAK. I can’t wait to visit home again.
To summarize my past semester: my relationship with God was overdue. I had neglected Him and didn’t prioritize my spiritual health. The move to Florida and the challenge of making new friends and new routines threw me off and I had a hard time finding my balance again. But God provides. And now I’m underway.
Determined to be the man that God has called me to be and nothing less.
Determined to love, serve, and goof around with the people in my life.
Determined to pick up my cross and follow Him.
The training is underway.