Halfway through typing that last post, something happened and I went nuts. It seems like these outbursts are a pretty big part of my life here at Carleton. It’s been tough, I’ll say that. But I think I’m finally hearing what God’s been trying to tell me.
In the beginning, it was like, “oh my gosh, who is this monster that I’m becoming??”. I’ve always had strange suspicions that demons lived inside of me or that I was schizophrenic (not actually the right term; I should say dissociative identity disorder) or something. Observing myself here…I wouldn’t be surprised if it were true.
But I’ve come to realize that that’s a very misleading way of thinking. Let me clarify what I mean by that – observing surface changes (e.g. from a pretty cheerful person to someone easily irritated) and interpreting them as fundamental changes. I guess they seem like that, and it even seems logical to think that way, but in actual fact, that ‘monster’ that seems to have only now surfaced, has done simply that – surfaced. It’s been there all along. It was just in hiding, lurking beneath the shiny, bubbly Barney-esque (i love you, you love me, we’re a happy family) surface. Do you get what I’m saying? The monster was in me from the beginning. I’ve been that monster since the moment I was born.
You know that verse in the Bible that says “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”? (It’s Romans 3:23, in case you’re interested). I don’t think I have ever been made so aware of the fact that I am a sinner, that I am hopeless without God, that without Him, I would be this horrible, HORRIBLE creature that hurts people and pushes them away. Oh man. It’s humbling to realize that, and finally, it all makes sense.
In a sense, yes, I have changed, but for right now, it is more helpful for me to just pay attention to the fact that this is what I am like without God. Not cool.
Thank GOD for His grace. It would be very easy to say that I am not growing, and am, in fact, going the other way, but I think that God’s grace means there is always opportunity for growth, no matter how much we appear to screw up those opportunities. I have faced many challenges here, and I definitely have not responded to most of them in the best way. I am inclined to see that as a failure, but I’m learning again that sometimes – very often – we need to go back before we go forward. God needs to tear down some things before He can build them up greater than before. I’m reminded of a video I watched a long time ago… Let me see if I can find it… I can’t :( [edit: I found it! click here] But anyway, it shows God as a sculptor, chipping away at a man. Yeah, painful. I’m sure he must be wondering if it’s really worth it or not. Perhaps even if he came to the right sculptor or if he’s been tricked. But yeah. Break down to build up.
Vulnerability. Ha. I was definitely not expecting that lesson to turn out like this. But God is good. God is gracious. I am so blessed to have friends who continue to love and encourage me despite the shit-hole (yes, I did just say that) that I am. They’re just one reason that I know God’s looking out for me.
Whatever You’re doing inside of me
It feels like chaos, but now I can see
This is something bigger than me
Larger than life, something heavenly
– Sanctus Real, “Whatever You’re Doing”