“For I know the plans I have for you…”
It’s easy to wonder sometimes whether we are following the correct path in life, and this gives rise to doubts as to whether or not we have truly been “put” where we belong or if we have chosen it for ourselves. For those who choose to live their lives seeking God’s will in all things, it’s difficult sometimes to escape these doubts as to whether God chose our course and brought us where we are or if we chose it and brought Him there instead. These are doubts I’ve entertained for the last few months since beginning my second semester as a first year law student… They have truly tried my faith.
I had hoped to draft this earlier in case the novelty faded. I wanted to write this to preserve a reminder for myself in the event I become discouraged about the course I’ve chosen in life, which I’m sure I will do from time to time…
I must confess, law school has been harder than I imagined it would be. (This leads me to wonder if I perhaps watched Legally Blonde one too many times.) Given everything that took place last semester concerning the month long illness and eventual passing of my precious niece Abigail, I did not do as well as I’d hoped to do on final exams, which took place at the same time as this tragedy in my family. I let the fact that I did not score as well as I thought I could have get to my head. I started to wonder if maybe I wasn’t cut out for this after all. I started to wonder if I had chosen this course for myself and done so to my own disadvantage. I had once been sure that this was where I belonged, but I began basing the accuracy of my decision on the world’s standards and not God’s. Perhaps a truer statement is that I’d been pretty sure that this was God’s will, but I wasn’t feeling very sure that it was mine anymore. That was until last Saturday, when I had a powerful reminder.
Public speaking has always been one of my biggest fears, but in facing that fear in the past (through mock trial in college and L-D debate in high school) I felt strong and convicted; I forgot myself. I was worried that I had changed too much since then and that this would no longer come naturally to me in my mid-twenties when I learned that I had to compete in a first year Oral Arguments Competition last weekend. I was fortunate to have been proven wrong. Not only did I feel as strong and convicted as I did in younger days, but I felt stronger than I ever had. In the midst of arguing I nearly forgot the fictional state of my client. Every minute was a total rush that left me wanting more. The judge’s comments and encouragement at the conclusion of the round only fed this fire. I left the competition not knowing whether I would advance but feeling reassured. I prayed the whole way there making requests of God and the whole way home thanking Him just feeling something inside me reminding me that I was born for this. This is what I want to do. It’s what I was made to do. This was the reason I felt convicted to go to law school: so that someday I can stand and do this in an actual courtroom. I felt convicted that this was what God wanted for my life and I felt so grateful that He sustained me through it.
When I learned on Monday that I advanced to next round, which takes place this Saturday, I was thrilled beyond belief. It was icing on the cake. I already had my reminder and whether or not I go further, I’m positive I will not be one bit discouraged. The point, I guess is that sometimes we doubt and when we do, God usually gives us that gentle nudge (or great big push in some instances) to remind us what it is we should be doing.
How awesome is our God that He cares even about the trivial things, which we inflate to such great proportions in our tiny lives?