A Bolt from the Blue

Last month, in a rather extemporaneous move, I decided to snowchase down to my ol’ collegiate stomping grounds, hoping to intercept one of the strongest southeastern snowstorms in years. As always, I was pumped to make the excursion, this time, to a place I hadn't set foot in nearly four years. But upon arrival at my Alma Mater, it wasn’t long before my world started to transform into a snowglobe of bittersweet retention…

…and now, after a month of silence, I reflect on past reflections...punching the keys to find truth hidden between the lines…
It feels like eons since I stepped off the baccalaureate platform and bid my farewell. But honestly, I’m glad it feels like it never happened. After all, the compounding effect maturity appends to time is practically cathartic. Besides, when the new self has no room to miss the older one buried in the ground, does it not inspire hope to a higher plane?

But sometimes, I wonder why I feel this way…why I’ve tolerated certain notions for so long. Of course, I could play the superficial “God card”, and seek to make moot any other point through “Hakuna Matata” spirituality. But when I convert tunnel vision into widescreen view, I find contentedness in being a forgotten figure masking a sliver of internal resentment still festering against an university I feel never gave me a chance...to change, grow, advance… basically the things I started doing the moment I left.
Yet, when I dig deeper and permit emotion to calibrate, I unearth an anger still pinned against me, particularly for neglecting my calling during a time I could have been used mightily. And true, while the environment was essentially a Petri dish for callous living*, truth is: I did nothing to contrast it, let alone rise above it.

Thus, it’s still easy every now and then to wonder: "If only" **  
If only I hadn’t tolerated an idolatrous pursuit of acceptance…
If only I didn’t equate cutting chords with mulligans…
If only I had realized admitting weakness was strength…
… perhaps then I would have graduated with some kind of honor, apart from the golden chord around my regalia.
Yet, as immaturity’s ghost seeks to sustain the subconscious splinter, I sense a grace within the grander scheme unfolding, forcing its withdraw and shielding me from shallow solace. And it’s here, at the place of contended fear and yielded surrender, where I find a power renewing perspective and filling me with the strength I need to press on.

So as I soak in refreshed freedom, I set my toast to what a supersized bolt from the blue can do and boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, past and present, so that Christ's power may rest on me. My prayer moving forward is for this power to be engaged and extended so others will be inspired to embrace forgiveness in fullness.

How wonderful it is to serve a God who uses our spontaneity to see His character more intentionally. For if we want to live on purpose, we must forgive on purpose and not feel like we have to hide behind the past or constantly run from it to be at peace. Perhaps this is why He grants us divine appointments to confront our fears head-on…so we may taste the sweetness of breakthrough, while reaching new levels of faith development and spiritual dependence.

* - as the case with many religious institutions
** - despite a completely restored life years later…

"Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me.  But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me."  ~ 2 Corinthians 12:8-9 (ESV)
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