Different people have different reactions to the end of summer. Moms rejoice at the dream of a quiet household. Children dread the thought of spending the next seemingly endless nine months cooped up in a classroom. With the prospect of this next school year, I for one, want to curl up in the fetal position in a dark corner rocking back and forth until it’s all over.
Ok, I’m being a little dramatic, but you get the point. In all honesty though, this year, my last year of college, is gonna be a rough one, so please pray for me. Between school, internship and campus ministry, I’ve all but waved goodbye to having a social life. Not to mention having to answer that daunting question that all adults like to ask, “So what are you going to do after graduation?”, to which a truthful answer should be, “Beg for a job,” but I answer with some canned recital of what I think I maybe might like to do sometime in the future. In reality I have absolutely no clue, and by the grace of God, I’ve come to terms with that fact.
I am Useless
It’s overwhelming having to be all things at all times. Student, leader, intern, sister, friend, coworker, daughter… and the list goes on and on. It feel like being a clown spinning plates on those little stick things, and if you let one plate fall then your whole act (i.e. LIFE) is completely shattered into tiny little pieces. I know we’ve all felt like that at one time or another. Life is just a series of high-stakes balancing acts.
This summer I’ve worried a lot about my senior year. How am I possibly going to do all of these things, and not only that, how am I going to be the best at all of these things? I’ve told God over and over that this is too much. I can’t do it. It’s not possible. I’m not good enough. I am useless.
I know, things got a little emo kid in there. But the fact of the matter is that all of these things are true in a sense. Without God, nothing is possible. Without God, I am useless. Without Jesus and the Cross, life has no meaning.
“When I am weak, then I am strong.”
Everything is pointless without Jesus. We go to school, we get a 9 to 5 job, we make money, we get married, we buy a house, we have children and then what? We die. Everything we work for eventually turns into dirt again, so what’s the point?
But in loving God, suddenly everything is transformed. Everyday is a chance to love God through loving others. Life is worth living. Not only that, life is super awesome, even with the trials and burdens we’re given. God has blessed each one of us infinitely with the chance to spend the rest of eternity with Him, in the state of absolute peace and absolute joy. We could join the biggest party ever for the rest of forever, and that’s pretty cool.
I asked God, “Lord, how do you expect me to do all of this?” He answered me, “I don’t.” God doesn’t expect us to be able to do everything all at once. God expects us to depend on Him in everything. He wants us to humbly ask Him for help and guidance.
St. Paul says, “For when I am weak, then I am strong.” We are strong in our weakness because it is God who carries us, the One who is the strongest. With God, all things are possible. With God, we are strong. With God, we are able to do anything.
We are Useful
So as far as how my next year will go, I’m not too worried anymore (she says now). I know God will use me in whatever way He sees fit. And I think that’s all something that we can take away from this. God will use our gifts in the best, most fulfilling way if we let Him. We are useful. Not only that, but each one of us is infinitely valuable in the eyes of God. Each one of us is infinitely loved and cherished.
So moral of the story, when we can’t, God can. And as a wise plastic mounted fish once told me, “Don’t worry, be happy. Oooooooo.”
“For I know well the plans I have in mind for you—oracle of the LORD—plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope.” - Jeremiah 29:11