Time is a funny thing. In the moment, it often seems to creep by, barely passing. When we look backwards, something happens and time speeds up. Because our perception of time is so unpredictable, we have to stop purposefully and take inventory every once in a while, or we risk missing what we’ve learned as time sped by.
Last night, I watched graduates at my Alma Mater receive their diplomas. Undergraduate, Master, and PhD degrees were conferred, marking the passing of time and a long list of lessons learned. This graduation was especially meaningful to me, because I sat among the faculty this year. Yes, this graduation marked my completion of one year as a college professor.
All week, I’ve been reflecting on the past year. I realize that most people do this in December, but when you are in the world of education, your year ends in either May or June, depending on your school.
A year ago, in May 2018, the following things were happening in my life:
- I was separated from my husband. We were having conversations about what it looked like to reconcile, and he told me repeatedly he was praying for God to fix our marriage. Then he would leave to be with his girlfriend while I continued to pray wholehearted for reconciliation. There was NOTHING I would not have done to fix my marriage.
- I had a lot of applications out to a lot of different places. There was one job that I really wanted more than the others, but there was also a place of deep-seated fear that made me want to flee everything – so I also applied to job in every city that I could think of.
- I had a lot of unknowns in my life, and they put me in an almost constant state of fear.
- I wrestled with my relationship with God. I didn’t understand why my life was going the way it was. I didn’t understand why God wasn’t answering my prayers and I found myself doubting who God is because of that.
Fast forward a year, May 2019
- I am divorced. It wasn’t my choice, it wasn’t my doing, but it is a fact. God gives me more and more peace about it as time passes, and I’ve come to understand that my hurt and pain is not something that makes me weak, or that makes me a failure, but rather they make me human.
- I have a job that I love at a college I love. I have the job that I really wanted a year ago. I have the job that I have wanted for longer than a year. I don’t doubt that I’m where God wants me to me.
- I have a lot of unknowns in my life still. Sometimes they cause fear and anxiety. Not nearly as much as they once did. I’m praying over some big things. I’m trusting that my good Father is working on my behalf. (I’d love for you to join me in praying, God knows the details).
- I am closer to God than I have ever been in my life. I am still wrestling with things, I still don’t completely understand why God allows certain things to happen. (But, I do understand why God didn’t answer my ex’s “prayer” to save our marriage. Someone can pray all day long to lose weight, but if they are saying that prayer while elbow-deep in a gallon of ice-cream, they can’t blame God for not seeing a result). But, I know that no matter what, God is good.
- Not only am I closer to God than I have ever been, I’m closer to EVERYONE who is in my life. I have a deeply rooted community who provides encouragement, accountability, and support. I am able to pour into people as they pour into me. Honestly, I wouldn’t trade that for anything – or any one.
I don’t know that my life will look like at the end of the 2020 school year. I know I have a long list of things I want to do better, because I am very imperfect and I don’t ever want to stop growing spiritually, personally, and professionally. Whatever happens, God will be as good then as He is now.
The one thing that time never changes is God.