As a college student, especially being in my third year, I face challenges daily. These challenges tend to be in be in the realm of education (mental), socialization (social), and health (physical). These challenges then combine to make one big spiritual challenge. Recently I have been facing a lot of challenges in the educational realm. I am in line to hopefully receive a bachelors of science in economics. This requires me to take an additional slew of math and statistics courses someone pursuing a B.A. in the subject would not have to take. Being that mathematics and the sciences are not my strong suit it has definitely been by the grace of God that I have made it this far. I have faced failures, such as having to retake calc. II, but I keep on keeping on with God carrying me through.
This semester I have been praying to God to get As in all five of my courses. You know how in the beginning of the semester you map out what courses you should definitely get an A in without breaking a sweat and what courses you’ll have to put some work into? Well I did that and it turns out my mapping was off-course. This semester I would have to put 100 per cent into ALL of my courses. The first challenge began. I prayed to God still. The second challenge came when I had eight STRAIGHT weeks of midterms, papers, and presentations. I persevered through the first three weeks of midterms and papers. Then the fourth week, the week of my international trade midterm, I fell sick. Like really really sick. I still pulled an all-nighter (not a good idea) and went in to take the test. WHAT A DISASTER! The whole time I struggled to comprehend my questions through my blurry and aching gaze. I passed the exam but the kind of passing when you barely passed. I started to lose heart even more as I was getting back the scores for my economics midterms. I was getting below average. But I prayed to God and I studied did I not? Why was this happening to me? The struggles continued though I managed to persevere.
Weeks went by and exams were taken. I was not seeing the fruitfulness of my work and prayers to God. Then came my final midterm. It was intermediate microeconomics. I studied, I continued to trust in God, I went in with a peaceful heart and mind, and I FAILED. I failed terribly. THAT WAS IT! I was fuming! I prayed such an angry and disheartening prayer to God that day. Why was he doing this to me? Words like “I don’t need you to fail God, I can do that by myself,” came from my tongue. After the tears and anger, I felt the utmost disappointment. I was disappointed in myself for how I reacted and then I felt so ashamed. For a couple of days I did not know what to say to God. I, who prayed almost every minute to God about anything, was speechless.
During my quiet times I’d read scripture but I would not pray. I could not see how God could forgive me for what I did and what I said. He has been so good to me and he sees me through everything. Like Jeremiah 29:11 says he has plans to prosper me and not to harm me, plans to give me hope and a future. I doubted all of His words because I did not have one thing go my way. James 5:10-11 tells us to be patient in our suffering and to persevere. In the verses we are reminded of God’s compassion and mercy. These were things that went out of the window in my anger. Perseverance is hard but that’s when we have to get out of ourselves and think “what is God trying to teach me?” We need to remember that in each suffering God is molding us to better fit his image. Sure it can be frustrating, it hurts and all-around sucks but we will be the better for it sooner along the way.
Keep in your heart:
Hebrews 12:11 (NIV): No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.