Look what God has done!

I am a firm believer in the idea that if you aren’t bursting at the seams to talk about what God is doing in your life, there’s a problem.  And let me say, I just want to tell everyone what God has been doing in my life.  I’m in a constant state of overwhelming joy, because the person I was at the beginning of the year isn’t who I am today, all because of God.

Come see what God has done!

1. He has broken down my walls. The first post I ever made public was titled When Life Doesn’t Go As Planned.  I wrote that coming out of a rough patch in my life.  I wrote it at the beginning of June, with plans of attending a conference with the junior high youth at my church later in the month.  Let me tell you what: I was supposed to be at that conference. One night, in the middle of the week, the leader of our group gave us time to just be with, and talk to, God.  That entry in my prayer journal is probably one of my favorites, because I got so real and raw with God.  My hurt and anger about my plans not going through came out in such beautifully painful way.  I was *internally* yelling, and physically sobbing.  The very last thing I wrote in that entry was “How can I trust you now? You know that’s what I wanted!”. Right after I wrote that, I kid you not, I felt such an indescribable peace.  I can’t explain it, but it’s almost like God used that moment to knockscreenshot_2016-10-23-13-51-12 down the walls I had made against Him, in the time since my application was rejected.  Looking back, it’s very clear to me that I was afraid to trust God with my future.  And since that moment, which will be forever etched in my mind, my relationship with God has been totally different.

2. He has redeemed a part of my story.  On the last night of the conference, the leader of the group had us all sit in a circle and gave us the opportunity to stand in front of each other, resubmitting our lives to God.  At one point, a girl stood up and told us she was giving her life back to God, and that her girlfriend didn’t want her to.  Now, this girl was someone I was having trouble loving because of different rumors and stories and whatnot.  A couple of minutes later, this girl stood back up and said her girlfriend just broke up with her.  This girl also said she wasn’t going to go back on her decision.  I applauded her, because I know what it’s like to leave a relationship for God.  (That’s my favorite story to tell, but one for a much later time.). Fast forward a couple of minutes to when everyone was heading back into the hotel.  I happened to walk past this girl hugging with some of her friends, and without even thinking of my past, something compelled me to turn around.  The words just came tumbling out if my mouth, “Hey, I have something to tell you, and I don’t know if it’s something you want to hear or not.  But I left a relationship for God too, so I know what you’re going through.  If you need to talk or anything, I’m here.”. I thought that was all I needed to do, but then the girl hugged me and said “thank you”.  And then, when we returned from the trip and were unpacking the vans, this girl came and found me, and said she wanted to hug me again. I was, and still am, amazed by God, and how He used that moment.

3. He has restored a broken relationship. This part is also becoming one of my favorite parts to talk about.  So, the end of my sophomore year of high school, I tried out for the flute and clarinet section leader position for my high school’s marching band.  My best friend of 10+ years also tried out.  From my perspective, our relationship had been falling apart prior to the try-outs, but after the results were posted, the relationship came crashing down in a tremendous display.  I was given the position, and it was a bittersweet 20160906_222934thing.  We didn’t really talk to each other for years after that.  In fact, I was even afraid to go to things where I knew she would be, because I was still hurting and afraid.  That is, until this summer.  God kinda blows me away, because the similarities between trying out for section leader, and applying for the position at the church camp were incredibly striking.  When I eventually had the courage to talk about my disappointment of not being accepted at the camp with those in my young adult group, it opened the door for the four-years coming conversation with my friend, who goes to the same church.  Since that moment, our relationship has been getting better and better by the day.  We’ve car-pulled together, worship together, gone to lunch together, planned a party together, given advice to each other, texted each other (which we haven’t done in years!).  Heck, I even asked her to write a post for my blog.  Now, our relationship isn’t perfect, but God is good.  And what I think is so beautiful about this, is that her and I had the time to grow and learn about ourselves separately, and then have a second chance at the friendship, continuing to learn and grown.

4. He has met fear with love, and redeemed another part of my story.  Okay, this one is a bit harder to talk about, as it is more recent.  Last year, I was involved in something I’m really ashamed of.  It’s not who I am, and if I could go back in time, I would change it in a heartbeat.  However, I didn’t tell my parents about it, because I was afraid of disappointing them.  I  put off telling them for over a year, and it really began to affect me. I had confessed it all to God prior, so I thought I was forgiven, and that was the end of that.  But just a couple of weeks ago, I was at the weekly young adult worship I go to, and I began to feel really convicted to tell my parents.  You guys, I was so scared and so afraid, because one of my biggest fears is disappointing those I love.  It’s rather petrifying sometimes.  When I got home, I told my parents.  I was expecting anger and disappointment, but they showed me love.  Love; pure unjudging love.  And if that’s how my parents respond when I’ve screwed up, just think how much greater our Father’s love is.  Since that moment, since experiencing that love, I’ve felt so free.  It’s such a beautiful thing.

5. He has provided financial help for college.  The end of my freshman year of college, my grades could have either fallen three B’s and two A’s, or four A’s and one B for the spring semester.  It all depended on how well I did for the finals.  I was stressing out and studying like crazy.  See, I’m currently at a community college, planning to transfer to a private college to complete my Bachelor’s degree.  If I maintained a high enough GPA, I would be invited to join the Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society for community college students.  If I joined, my transfer school would recognize that achievement and cover half of my tuition.  The college I’ll be transferring to is just around $50,000/yr.  It’s a tad overwhelming.  However, my dad is an alumni, so I’ll get a small discount from that.  And my mom is a professor at the college I’m currently attending, so the college recognizes that relationship and covers my tuition.  I was really stressing during finals week, and while waiting for the final grades, because if I didn’t get invited to join PTK, I’d be looking at paying $100,0o0.  God is good, because I ended the spring semester with four A’s and one B, increasing my GPA.  I took classes over the summer, too, which further increased GPA.  Around the beginning of this school year, I got my invitation to join PTK.  I’ve joined, and am currently waiting to hear back from my transfer college about my application.  God is so good.

6. He is rebuilding my ideas and expectations of romantic relationships. This I could talk about forever.  I mentioned in an earlier post that I was testing someone.  I still am, and we went on our first date a couple of weeks ago.  We started talking in August, and have been texting since.  Whatever this is, it’s moving really slow, and I love it.  I’ve beenScreenshot_2016-10-16-17-00-31.png single for over two years.  My first relationship moved really quite fast, and it was an emotionally hard relationship.  Since it ended, I’ve been hurt by potential relationships, and I’ve hurt guys who have gotten close to me.  I was a bit of a mess there for a bit ….. but I’ve gotten to the point where I know my worth is not based on a relationship.  I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t need a guy, or a relationship, to validate me.  I’ve taken control of my life and have embraced who I am as a person, and I think that’s why I’m so excited about getting to know this guy.  I’ve gotten to the point where I can stand in my own power.  Having been single for so long has given me the chance to re-evaluate my expectations of a relationship, and give my romantic heart back to God.  And this guy is treating me like I have never been treated before.  I could go on and on about why, but know that I am very happy, and I feel safe.  Because we met at the weekly young adult worship, I know God is a part of his life  Whether or not this texting (and occasional dates) turns into anything else is beside the point.   My heart has been beautifully reset, and I couldn’t be happier.

I could really go on and on about the things God is doing in my life.  I am beyond happy and overjoyed for the things God has done in my life, and I can’t wait to see what He’ll do in the future.

What is God doing in your life?  Are you bursting at the seams to tell people, “Look what God has done!”?

Ciao for now,

Julia

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