Except for the few moments when it wasn’t.
Maybe it’s because I’m still recuperating from being in a two-weekend show. Or that I’m still getting used to regular life after a glorious spring break. Or I just slacked off. Whatever the case, there were some rough moments. Especially Friday morning.
It was a chill morning. I’d overslept and was lounging around in my pajamas, wondering if I planned to actually do anything with my life that day, when the phone rang. It was my science teacher. Turns out, for some reason or another, I’d completely forgotten that I had a class that morning…it’d started 15 minutes beforehand.
Scrambling around my room in a mad flurry, I was ready to go in 5 minutes. The last thing I called to my dad before peeling out of the driveway was “ItotallyforgotandImlateandImreallysorryand PLEASE don’t tell Mom!“
I was a stressed out mess. This wasn’t the first careless mistake I’d made that week. Tears began to stream down my face as I remembered the past failures of that week. Like on Sunday, when I’d locked my keys in the car and totally freaked. Or the fact that I’d been so scared about attempting to take another math test, that I’d avoided all homework that week. Again. And the many times I’d stopped listening and then said something totally stupid or let someone down, because I simply wasn’t paying attention. Or on Thursday when I got in a fight with someone and it was more of my fault than I wanted to admit and now things felt kinda tense and I was still trying to work up the courage to apologize.
And now, this. I’d completely forgotten yet another commitment and hadn’t respected my teacher’s time. I was wearing sweats and a mismatched t-shirt, my greasy hair was spilling out of a lopsided ponytail, and now my eyes were puffy from crying. Great.
“God, I feel like such a waste of space.”
In a flurry of emotion, the words escaped my mouth before I’d fully considered their meaning.
Feeling a combination of anger/embarrassment/shame/regret, I drove in silence for a few more moments….and then, in between my sniffling, that still, small voice whispered to my heart.
“Sasha, you’re choosing to let your emotions lead you on a roller coaster. Are you really gonna stick with this mindset? Who are you gonna let define you today?”
“Thank Me for today, and who I made you to be. I like you a lot. Even right now.”
Well, that was the last thing I wanted to do. I wanted to crawl into a hole and live there forever.I wanted to beat myself up and make sure I suffered for the rest of the day, as penance for my carelessness.
But, I did it. I hesitantly began thanking God for the day. For the fact that I was alive. For my teacher. For relationships. For this current opportunity to grow. For His goodness. For the fact that He’s bigger than me and my messes. For His love.
And then, I began to thank Him for me. For my heart. For who He’s made me to be. For what He’s doing in me. I began to repent, not out of shame or guilt, but out of a sincere desire to make things right. I began to forgive the people who’d hurt me during the week. For the first time in days, I was finally getting some quality one-on-one time with Jesus, and He was making the most of it. In that 30 minute, rather emotional, car ride, He was doing something in my heart.
He was helping me forgive myself for being imperfect. He was teaching me to turn to Him with my weaknesses, instead of ignoring them or attempting to handle them myself.
He was showing me that His love really is unconditional.
And, if Jesus–the completely holy and perfect God of everything– can love and forgive me in the midst of my brokenness, then I think it’s important I learn to do the same.
I need to learn to get over myself and my feelings, and choose to agree with truth…I need to learn to receive the Lord’s love for me now–not when I think I deserve His love. It’s humbling. When I’m being ugly, the last thing I want is for someone (who happens to be perfect) to come up and tell me I’m beautiful and they love me.
But, at the end of the day, it really is the best choice.