When I went to college, God taught me how to be dependent on him. After praying and seeking wise counsel, I felt God wanted me to go to a college that was away from my family, my boyfriend at the time, and my comfort zone. Still, I put up walls and tried to maintain control of my own life. I made friends, but I wouldn’t let them know the real me. I clung to what my church taught me, what my hometown had taught me, and what I had learned on my own.
My perspective changed when I arrived at my first class. My professor taught us ideas that were contrary to my beliefs as if they were fact. I even argued with him, proving valid points, but he would defend his arguments with quotations from philosophers, theologians, and other scholars. This was the first time that someone had succeeded at deflating my pride, and it certainly was not the last.
I tried transferring to another school. Expecting a perfect world, I tried to run away from my problems. My problems with my boyfriend, however, did not go away. My jealousy of other people did not go away. My anxiety and anger did not go away. God put difficult people in my life to grow my character. He showed me that life was not going to be perfect, that I wasn’t going to be perfect…but that it was OK. Having a boyfriend wasn’t going to fix my problems. Simply believing a set of beliefs wasn’t going to heal me.
As I learned more about the consistency of God – of his unchanging, unfailing love and faithfulness – I learned more of the truth that God will not change, even when my circumstances change. I learned the truth about what God thought of me, that he loves me and he believes that I am worth knowing. Despite the opposing voices that have kept me from pursuing my dreams in the past, God has always been encouraging me. Finally, I learned that my past is definitely in the past. I have been set free from the darkness that once ruled my life – the anxiety, the chaotic household, and the people who told me I would not succeed in writing – by God’s love and faithfulness. However, I would have never learned that on my own. God was the one who taught me that. He strategically placed the right people at the right time to break down my pride and be willing to listen to him.
To conclude my personal testimony, I want to let you know that God is the one who saved me. I want to publicly thank God for teaching me the truth. I thought that it was me against the world. I thought that I had no hope. But in ways that only God could show, I learned that I have a hope and a future. I have a reason to fight. I have a reason to be free.
God has promised to give peace to all who ask for it. If you have asked for peace, he is faithful to give it to you. If you’ve done all the right things, keep waiting. God will reveal more about himself, about you, and about the world around you in his timing. He will teach you ideas that you could never learn on your own.