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Just a twentysomething living my life and, as most my age, figuring it out as I go,

Thursday, March 13, 2014


"If the point of life is the same as the point of a story, the point of life is character transformation." --Don Miller, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years

If you haven't read this book, I highly recommend putting it on your list! Or really anything by Don Miller. Anyway, this quote really stuck out to me, so I just wanted to unpack a little bit. Recently I have been on an online quiz kick with my suite-we send each other silly quizzes that tell you everything from what color is your aura to which member of One Direction should you marry (for those wondering, I've gotten Harry for every variation of this topic.) I have also had to take some psychological tests for an application process I am currently going through. On both of these types of quizzes (legitimate and amateur-created), a series of personality/preference based questions are asked. In the past two weeks I have answered questions about what type of pet would I prefer, where someone would find me at a party, what my ideal first date would be, and even where I value myself. It may seem silly, but these quizzes-both clinical and not-have sent me on some soul searching. I realized that I have a hard time discerning how to answer some questions because I weigh my entire life in the options. And too often, I have to stop myself from answering how my late adolescent self would. I am realizing more and more that I have changed a LOT since high school. I have found a deeper faith-one that is informed and intentional instead of well-behaved and surface. I have gained more and more confidence in myself. I have started realizing what I actually like and what I don't like, instead of trying to like whatever is cool around me. 
And through it all, I keep changing. I have often been noted as the most changed person in different periods in my life. At summer camp, in middle school choir, with my high school friend groups, and now with my best friends. I never thought twice about how often I am told that I've "changed so much since..." You fill in the blank. But I think that's one of the qualities I am thankful for the most. The ability to grow in so many situations. And maybe that's because I have more growing to do than most people, I'm not quite sure, but I constantly thank God that I have experience character transformation. 
Granted, I still have many days where I backslide closer to my old ways, but the further I grow away from that, the further my backslides are from that original point. I don't say any of that to brag, just reflecting on life and story. We are given an opportunity to live the kind of story we want. And sometimes that story is walking alongside God, letting Him change and grow us. Sometimes that story has lows, sometimes it has highs. But we are always moving in our story. We can live as the protagonist-moving forward, toward a new self who is more loving/courageous/confident/joyful/whatever you desire most. Or we can live as an antagonist-moving back, away, down; becoming more pessimistic/angry/spiteful/fearful. Either way, we go through a character transformation. And, as Don puts it, "If you haven't experienced character transformation, the story hasn't happened yet." 

We can choose our own story, whether we will be an antagonist or protagonist. Whether we will grow forward, or slide back. Whether you will live your story intentionally or with apathy, playing the victim. What will your character transformation be?

I Just Can't Do It Alone

The reality of graduation is weighing very heavily on me. Not in an "I'm depressed and mopey, freaking out because college is ending" kind of way, but more of a "wide-eyed 22 year old, facing the precipice of real-life adulthood" way. 

In less than 2 months now, I will don my graduation cap and gown, hopefully smoothly waltz across the Benson stage, shake hands with Dr. McLarty, and shuffle my way into the cold world. And each step I take toward that day is making me realize more and more that I am growing up. What a terrifying, but simultaneously incredible, thought! 

I have changed so much in the past 4 years-physically, emotionally, spiritually-and thank GOD! As I approach this crossroads, I find myself stealing glances back at what was, thinking about all the things I have learned and the different places I have transformed. I can literally feel the growing pains, as I prepare to take my leap into full-on responsibility; a world away from the simplicities of the routine of school-life. And this semester is challenging me-this whole year, in fact. I have been given incredible responsibilities (and when I say incredible, I mean I am so honored by all the responsibilities handed to me within the past year). I was given the chance last summer to not only intern for a second time but to coordinate a seminar about human trafficking at my church. My best friend got engaged to the man of her dreams, and I am humbled to stand beside her as Maid of Honor this year. I spent last semester as an activities director for my social club with my dear friend Steph. In some fumble of life, I was selected to help lead our human trafficking group at Harding with a group of awesome people who are dedicated to the cause! And most recently, have been blessed to be connected in a powerful way with the organization PATH in Little Rock, and am directing a 5K in May to help promote awareness and raise funds.

And with all this responsibility, as amazing as it is, I am questioning what on EARTH God thinks He is doing. I'm the girl who can't finish anything! There's a coffee table sitting in our apartment living room that has been sanded down for almost a year now, waiting on me to spruce it up with a new paint job. I'm the girl who starts to clean her room, and get's stuck sorting through a drawer of old stuff, leaving it a bigger mess than when I started. I can't even list how many books I have accumulated over my life that are half-read, because I start a new one and never go back to finish it.

So this is my growing up challenge. God is challenging me to finish what I started. He's challenging me to not hope that things are moved or cancelled for my lazy convenience, but to take on all my responsibilities (be it Maid of Honor, HUmanity, graduation, post-grad planning, social life, PATH, etc.) and complete them for His glory. He is teaching me that I CAN'T finish anything on my own...except maybe a Peanut Butter Snickers. But I CAN finish if I turn it over to Him. I will always need help. Granted, I am often too stubborn to ask for it. God has been standing next to me so many times saying "Here, hand it to me, beloved. We can do it together. My yoke is easy and my burden is light. It's lighter than any of these things you are juggling. So hand it to me, let me help." 

I will probably still always be that girl who has a hard time finishing every book I pick up, or every DIY project I so boldly take on. But I also know that God is growing me in this stage of my life, to be a mature adult, willing to take on tasks that will glorify Him. He just has to remind me sometimes that I can only truly finish them if I rely on Him.