My junior year I had the best English teacher. Being in her class taught me that I too could one day be a teacher that loved and inspired students. Within the public school system I knew that there were rules about sharing the gospel but I also knew that there were literary pieces that delved into morals that I could encourage my students in. That’s when I decided to become an English teacher.
My senior year I went to a winter camp with my church. The speaker was talking and suddenly called me out from the crowd. Oblivious I continued to focus on whatever held my attention at the time until my friend elbowed me in the side. He started speaking things over me about healing and the things God had for me. He also told me that I wouldn’t need to worry about college. That God had me and would continue to hold me through the years that I was in school. He told me that my voice was anointed and God was going to use it to speak life into people
I believed it.
Then I started college
To be honest a ton of innocence was shattered in college. I still remember walking into my last semester at community college. I was taking a Creative Writing class, that I was ecstatic for. The only problem was that the professor that happened to teach this class was one the well known mean and hardest professors, and he loved knowing that this was his reputation. He told us, with very expletive language that he didn’t care what we thought about him and nothing was off limits, topic wise for this class.
Que dark stories.
We were told that we had to critique our classmates stories in small groups. This included reading and discussing parts of stories. Let me be the first to say, I truly believe there are some topics that simply shouldn’t be written about. Reading for me is something I do to unwind, to learn, and to entertain myself. My imagination is one of creativity and visually sees every aspect of things talked about. It’s wild. It’s free. And sometimes it’s scary. The dark things classmates chose to write about shocked anxiety through my entire being. Glorifying drugs, partying; describing in full detail all forms of abuse and hurt, literally broke my heart.
The innocence of my mind became consumed with the corrupt acts of the human race. Fear pulsed through my body for years. It did not stop at community college. I remember talking to my mom about my concerns with transferring and she assured me that it would not be like this. I continued on my path of pursuing an English degree and was met with the same depravity for another 3 years.
Leaving college was one of the most exciting things. The scars I endured during this time produced deep shame. The thoughts and fears that plagued my mind year after year were gut wrenching. The voice that was stolen from me. I ended college with debt and chains of lies and fear that relentlessly taunted me.
And God said He would be with me…
Towards the end of Genesis, we are introduced to Joseph and his brothers. Joseph was given dreams from God about the future God had for him. He would one day be in charge and his brothers would bow down to him. Throughout his life he was introduced to the depravity of the human race. First he was sold into slavery by his brothers. He was accused of rape and the accusations were believed even though he withstood and relentlessly chose to be a man of integrity. In jail he was told that he would be remembered, “Yet the chief cupbearer did not remember Joseph, but forgot him.” Genesis 40:23.
Hopelessness taunted him.
Complacency looked enticing.
But God was not done.
Joseph had a deep awareness that no matter what happened God was the one with the final say. He was the one that held His life and upheld him.
I don’t know what setbacks are in your face telling you that God isn’t going to keep His promises but I do know that the enemy would love for you not to reach your full potential. God has called you to a life. He has set you apart for specific purposes. Every part of your story that has taken you on different paths away from that calling can be redeemed. Every fear that the enemy uses to keep you bound can be broken. God has you. Trust Him in all that you are in. Don’t choose to let go of your character for comfort. Instead go against the grind. Against culture. Increase your integrity instead of lowering it, and stay in the game. He has you.
I’ll continue the rest of my story next week. For now know you are loved prayed for and set up for His plans.