For as long as I can remember, I feared the future. I feared the unknown of what my future would be.
I never had a clear path to what I wanted to do in life and in high school that is the question you seem to get asked daily if not more. To me the dreaded questions "What are your plans for the future?" or "What do you want to do with your life?" would shake me to my core because as everyone around me was finding the answers to those questions I was not. I did not know what school I wanted to go to or what job I wanted or have a ten-year plan like some of my friends that were really well prepared.
I let that fear of the future consume my life for what feels like forever. I can recall times where I would break down crying, begging God or anybody for a sign or to guide me in a direction just to have one. I was to the point I just wanted to know what to do and did not really care what that direction was. I was just so sick of not knowing.
I can not pinpoint an exact time where the fear started to go away but I know it came close to the middle of my senior year. I began to realize I was wasting my time worrying about the future and tough the future would be here sooner than later I was never going to get my time in high school back.
My prayers were answered in a way. I slowly began to have answers to those once dreaded questions. I tried to live in the moment as much as I could. I rarely said no to hanging out with friends. And I can live to say the lack of sleep I got from staying up late and making memories was 100% worth it. I guess you could refer to it as a YOLO mentality even though I would never use such a cheesy term. ;)
So the point right, you are wondering where my point is and where the "She Can Laugh" comes in I'm assuming.
"She Can Laugh" comes from the bible verse Proverbs 31:25.
She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.
I was introduced to this verse from a hometown brand "Identity in Christ." They created a line of jewelry that tells stories of peoples identity in Christ. They have four stories they share, "Not I But Christ," "Keep Pressing In," "Do Not Lose Heart," and "She Can Laugh." Each phrase has there own story explaining that identity in Christ.
"She Can Laugh" reads,
Every now and then we find ourselves at a breaking point. We have choices. One of which is a break down. Sometimes that seems a little easier doesn't it? Just let go for a bit. You can't keep up anyway. The other is a break through. This requires holding on for just a little bit longer. Holding on to hope because in us there lies a strength. A peculiar strength. It's not grown by our hard work and grit and resolve. But rather, it is simply to be known.
When we begin to see those great big burdens we are carrying in light of the enormity of God's strength and the sufficiency of His provision, something inside us shifts. Our perspective changes. We discover another route… she can laugh. No longer are we driven by fear, alone in our tears, and defined by our circumstances. "She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come." Proverbs 31:25 So come what may. If we can't laugh, then what can we do? Oh what beauty shines forth from the heart, though it has been broken, still emerges with a gentle smile. And what contagious joy is to be found as she discovers that she can laugh.
The first time, I read this I broke down. I hid the tears welling up in my eyes because well I was in public, with my mom and I was not about to lose it right there in the shop. But it hit me, it was my story. I related to every word, and it was also then that I realized I did not need to be fearful.
You see I was always told growing up to pray about what upset me but it was during that period of uncertainty that I started to have doubts of just how much my prayers were going to help with my fears. Reading that identity story I was reminded of the power of my prayers.
I still have uncertainty about my future, I still do not know exactly what I want to do with my life, but I now look forward to the uncertainty. Like it is a surprise rather than a scary unknown. And I can laugh knowing everything will work out the way it should.