I am a Christian.
And I am a teenager, almost twenty something, a full time college student, a part time after school program coordinator, a friend and a daughter. My life is often spinning so fast that I don't know which way is up. And like many people my age and in the same time in their life, I struggle. I struggle with life and I struggle with my faith.
It seems like at this pivotal point in my life, I struggle with it more than I ever have before.
Let me take a step back. I don't struggle with my beliefs. I believe there's a God, one God. I believe he is there, and that I am his daughter. I was fearfully and wonderfully made by him.
I struggle with keeping my faith alive and staying faithful to those beliefs.
See since my life started spinning so quickly, it seems that Sunday mornings are used to catch up on sleep and frantic last minute homework. Bedtime is for sleeping, bible studies come second. When struggles come up, prayer seems like it takes too much time.
I say those things with sadness because I want so badly to have the relationship with God that so many people around me have with him. I think that's what makes this time so hard because some college students have it together, they're connected and they feel the love of God all around them. Some students don't believe at all, and they're often very vocal about those beliefs. We are forced to pretend like our beliefs don't exist, not allowed to discuss Christianity in the college setting because of fear of stepping on peoples toes. (Don't get me wrong, I don't want people to feel like we don't like their beliefs, but I don't want mine crushed either.)
This is the struggle. We see both sides in college. Some students will change their beliefs and lose them, some students will strengthen them, and some students (like me!) will continue to keep a lackluster faith at best.
College is difficult, entering the workforce is difficult, moving out from our parents shelter is difficult. These difficulties wear down on our time, our energy, and our faith. It tests what we can do, and what we can't do. These tests are the tests that rattle our once strong faith.
I want to pursue this relationship with God strongly. I want to feel the connection my peers feel with him, and I don't want my beliefs to die. So I started reading into it. I started Pinteresting religious articles and bible verses. I started reading religious books that opened a world of 'okayness' to my feelings. These books told me that other students felt the same, and related to the emotions that I was feeling.
I'm writing this because I feel like I have been able to find my way back to the faith I leaned on when I was in middle school. I have found my way back to being content with who I am and where my life is going. My relationship is nowhere near the relationship of my peers yet, but it is a continued work in progress and more than I could ever hope for out of this new campaign of my life. I have learned to grab my bible instead of my cell phone at night. I try to think of Sunday morning service as a refreshing start to the week.
Life is tough. We get busy, and we get thrown these curve balls that make us question everything we've ever known. We have to make time, time to talk to God, time to read the bible, time to find those words of affirmation we need about life. By taking the time, I have learned that my relationship with God is unfailing. My faith is always there, no matter how far I stray, I can always find my way back. You can always find your way back.
My relationship with God still isn't that of some of my peers, but the commitment I have since put in to the relationship has given me peace. It has given me peace to move on and make new choices that benefit me. That relationship has helped me start to feel whole again.
You can find your way back.