Tears are funny things, aren’t they? We all cry for a variety of reasons, but never in my life have I cried so many tears of joy in one week. Over the past year I have cried…a LOT. I was struggling to get over past relationships, battling depression, and oftentimes just trying to make it through to the next day. So I’m very familiar with tears of sadness. However, it has been a while since I cried from pure joy. As a matter of fact, I believe it has been quite a while since I actually experienced pure joy. I’m sure that was a contributing factor to the tears that accompanied the joy that I experienced this week.
I’d like to go into some detail about each event that triggered a waterfall of joyful tears this week, but I’ll start by listing the three occurrences:
- Becca’s wedding on Saturday
- A new relationship that God has blessed me with
- Good news about graduate school
- On Saturday my friend, Becca, got married to an amazing Christian guy, and I cried from the moment I saw her start to walk down the aisle and pretty much throughout the wedding ceremony. Becca and I have been in an S-group together since my sophomore year in college. S-groups were implemented at Mercer RUF shortly after I started attending, and they are intended to be “sanctification groups” or accountability groups. S-group was a place where the five of us sophomore girls could share our lives together and be led by an older RUF student. We read scripture, prayed together, and shared the happenings of our lives with each other. I don’t think I realized how much my S-group really impacted my life at college until I left, and I certainly did not realize how closely I had bonded with these women until I practically cried through all of Becca’s wedding. I had experienced the ups and downs of her life through her recollections during each of our weekly meetings, and I have always been encouraged by her unwavering faith in Christ even through the toughest and most unimaginable moments in life. It was no surprise to me that God blessed her with a man rooted in the Word and ready and willing to love Becca as Christ loves the Church. Becca & Phil’s wedding exemplified all that a Christian wedding should stand for; it was a beautiful public profession of their commitment to one another in Christ…and it made me cry tears of joy. Even reflecting on this beautiful union or trying to communicate it to others brought tears to my eyes. So that was my first joyful cry of the week.
- Then on Thursday I had a date with
Cason, my now-boyfriend. We have been dating for about a month now, but it seems like I have known him forever. We met back in high school through a program called Teen Advisors (TAs). He was homeschooled, but he came to my high school for TA sessions. We knew each other, and we had plenty of mutual friends, but we weren’t close at the time. I started going to a young adult ministry called The Door when I was at home from college on Christmas and summer breaks, and we reconnected through that. Over a week ago we went on a picnic in the park, and he asked me to be his girlfriend. I was more than ready and willing to enter into an exclusive relationship, but I was hesitant about one thing: Facebook. Cason had already met my parents when he picked me up for our first date, and I thought it only right and respectful to grant his parents the same courtesy before publicly broadcasting our relationship to the world. (We’re getting closer to the point, don’t worry!)
So, Thursday evening I went on a date with Cason to meet his parents, and I was very encouraged by the experience. It allowed me to learn more about how Cason and his family relate, and it was evident that he comes from a family that cares deeply about God and one another. I was so thankful for the opportunity to meet such Godly parents who lovingly raised such a respectful, “faithful,” Christ-centered young man. While sitting on the couch with Cason on Thursday night talking over the evening, I was overwhelmed by all of these thoughts….and it made me cry tears of joy. How embarrassing to sit on a couch in front of your boyfriend of a month and overflow with joyful tears, but he completely understood, which made me feel that much more thankful and blessed to have him in my life. Two months ago if you asked me where I thought I would be, I never would have said, “In a relationship,” but it has been my experience that God always has better plans than I could imagine. For that I am eternally thankful.
- Finally, on Friday I received an unofficial email from Baylor expressing their “SIGNIFICANT interest” in me attending their School Psychology grad program. WHAT?!?! WAIT, ME!?!? I re-read the email at least five times…and it made me cry tears of joy. Throughout this whole graduate school application process I have continually reminded myself not to get my hopes up, obviously for no good reason. I think I built such a wall that I did not allow myself to believe that my dreams and risks would actually see positive results. Even when I received the email, I found myself thinking, “This is too good to be true,” and I had to quickly remind myself that I love and serve a God who is ever faithful. I’m constantly reminded that he brought me to the specific profession of school psychology for a reason, and it is even more clear to me now that school psychology is where I am supposed to be, as God continues to remove barriers on my path to becoming a school psychologist. He has put my mind at ease so many times over the course of this application process and constantly reminded me that my future is not really mine at all, but His. I am so eager to continue on this path to becoming a school psychologist via this new avenue of grad school.
I am truly overwhelmed with all of the blessings that God has placed in my life, especially now that I have enough perspective to look back and realize that He’s had his hand over all of these events in my life even before I could have imagined they were possibilities for me. Even during this last year when I had practically given up on so many things in my life and at times wondered what God was doing, He was working in my life to bring fulfillment and thus bring even more glory to His name. I am beyond blessed and overwhelmed with joy and forever thankful to eternally serve a God who is always faithful.