Perseverance

Life is so crazy...
For so long I looked forward to coming to CanIL. I loved it here the first little while, and then when the work started getting harder and more frequent and my marks began to drop my love for this slowly deteriorated. Besides, I thought to myself, I don't even know how this fits into my life. Why am I applying myself so much and stressing so much? In some ways, this was a good realization. Realizing that stressing myself out is not why God brought me here was good. But he also didn't bring me here to slack off or give up (besides I'm a Reimer and we DON'T give up and we DON'T slack off- we work hard and persevere through all).
James has been on my reading list lately and he says, "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
Now this may seem a little drammatic but it is how I've been feeling lately. I do find this time a trial. I am frequently frustrated, overwhelmed, exhausted and sleep deprived. I don't feel smart enough to be here and I sit in class wondering how many more topics will go over my head. Yet James says, consider it pure joy when you face trials. Joy. How can I have joy? I choose joy. I choose to say ok I didn't get those last four terms, but I understand this one! And although it took me three times as long to do my homework as everyone else, at least I finished! I need to stop focusing on my situation, my problems, my frustrations, and remember God is good. That never changes. And what joy I can have in that! God is good and will never leave me. I know that when I am up till 2 am working on homework and all my friends have long since gone to sleep, God is still there. I know that when I am at my breaking point and feel like I can't do anymore, God can. I know when the coffee is not keeping me awake, relying on God will get me through. This is all testing how much I trust God.
Do I trust God to get me through what he brought me to? Do I trust God to use this time to grow me and for my good? Do I trust God to be my strength when I have none? Or am I relying on my own strength? If I rely on God all this will produce perseverance. And do you know what perseverance equals? Maturity, and completeness!! I want that so badly! I want to be mature and complete, lacking nothing! I have hope that one day I will be. One day when I have made it through this mess that we call life, I will be mature and completely, not lacking anything. That gives me hope. That gives me joy.

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