Monday, November 2, 2009

I need to be refined

I'm just gonna be honest. I have never felt so distant from God as I have been these last couple weeks. You would think coming to a Christian college would make it easier to not neglect God, but for me, it's been easier to neglect Him. Before I left for school, I was on fire for God. I was so dependent on God, and nothing could bring me down.

But now, I am so critical of everyone here. I feel like everyone is putting on some kind of show. I got this attitude like I'm better than everyone else, like my faith was stronger than theirs' so I didn't need to be spiritually fed by them. Part of it was chapel. I mean, we are forced to go to a certain number of chapels, and then I was never amazed at the speakers. Part of it is that there are so many denominations so the talks are very basic so we can all have a common ground. I wasn't getting anything out of the chapel speakers, because I felt like I needed to hear things that were deeper and had more meaning.

I figured I could just read my Bible for myself and grow by myself. Big mistake. The only thing that did was bring me farther away from God. I was not getting fed by anyone. Sure, I was having fun, but I was not growing in my faith at all. The sad part was that I knew I was becoming distant, but I didn't do anything about it.

I think that happens one time too many for all of us - we know we are becoming distant, but we don't do anything about it. It's sad. I used to be a writer/blogger. I would write notes about what God is doing in my life, or what He's been teaching me, and I stopped once I got to Greenville. Writing really helps me figure things out. It clears my mind. The past couple months, I have just been keeping all my thoughts to myself and it got to the point where God finally decided to break me. I can't really tell you how it happened, but something just hit me inside and I knew I had to do something.

I went home this weekend. Yesterday, I visited my good friends Haley and Linnette, and they were asking how I was doing. I told them about how I felt so distant and critical, and Linnette asked me, "Who are you hanging out with?" I thought about that. It's not like the people I hang out with are bad people, but honestly, I don't feel like I am growing spiritually either. Sure, I have lots of fun with them, and that is important, but I feel like the spiritual growth is missing. This doesn't mean I am going to stop hanging out with these people. I am going to try to build closer friendships by having meaningful talks or whatever I need to do. She also asked, "Who is pouring into you spiritually?" I paused and thought, no one. That's my problem. Because of my critical attitude, I wasn't allowing anyone to help me grow in my faith. I need to open up to more people, and this is so hard for me. Also, I may be distancing myself for awhile, just to get back on track with God. I need to spend one on one time with God, and I have not been doing that as often as I need to.

I just want to encourage you all to not neglect God. Keep up your Bible studies. Have meaningful conversations with others. It helps. I had a friend in my room last night, and we had a nice talk. It was the first time I actually had a good talk opening up to someone else about my faith, and it was nice. We get so nervous of what others will think, or how they will judge us, but I just want to encourage you to find at least one other person you can open up to and share what God is doing. It will change your perspective. I realized that I was not the only one who was so critical about everyone here. I am asking God to help me be less judgemental and that whenever I start to criticize, realize that I am as much of a sinner as they are. I have my faults too. I can be annoying sometimes. I don't always dress fashionable. I am not always the nicest person ever. I can be bitter. In Matthew, Jesus preaches, “And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye’; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

Also, if you could, please keep me in your prayers as I am working on getting back on track. I love you all. And if anyone ever wants to talk, please let me know. I would love that. :)

OH, I am going to add on to this. Another thing that has been getting on my nerves is all the relationships here. I understand the whole waiting on God to bring the right guy to you, and wait for the guy who will pursue you, but as I look around and see everyone finding their lovers, it makes me feel like I am being held back, which is ridiculous thinking. I am still waiting on God, but I am getting impatient, ha. I haven't even had any "maybes" yet. I considered a few to be a maybe, but I just let those pass. I just have to keep reminding myself, singleness is not a disease. I guess I do have a few more years here, so I shouldn't be in a hurry, right? To my future husband, wherever you are, I hope you are having a great day. And, I love you. :) okay that's weird