Holy cow it’s been nine whole days since I’ve made a post! To all of my amazing readers, I apologize! I haven’t been just sitting around twiddling my thumbs and watching Say Yes To The Dress though. Here are all of the things I’ve been up to that have prevented me from blogging.
1. Playing gigs with my band
2. Practicing with my band and learning Christmas songs
3. Writing a paper
4. Writing a paper about how I wrote the previous paper
5. Writing the midterm assignment paper
6. Studying for the midterm
7. Taking the midterm
8. Modeling in a local fashion show
9. Ugly crying with joy over my new PS4
10. Hitting that busy point where essentials such as eating and sleeping are something you need to “make time for”.
So yeah, that’s what I’ve been up to lately! I’m grateful that God has put these things in my life to keep me busy, but at the same time, finding a balance between OH MY GOSH SO STRESSFUL SO MUCH ANXIETY GET AWAY FROM ME EVERY SECOND OF MY TIME IS PRECIOUS AND IF I FAIL THIS MIDTERM I WILL END UP AS A HOBO and “Oh no, I don’t need to get that done right now. I can definitely watch 10 more episodes of Parks and Recreation in the mean time. Wait, midterm, what midterm?” is tricky. Hearing God’s voice in the din of our hectic lives can be even harder. But I don’t think God is limited to speaking to us in absolute silence, although that is one of the best ways for us to listen to Him. He’s everywhere. He places events, opportunities, and people in our lives and speaks through them. And maybe being silent doesn’t mean retreating to a cabin in the middle of nowhere (although that certainly sounds appealing sometimes). Can we be silent anywhere? I don’t mean not saying a word at all, to anyone. I mean can our hearts be silent? Can our minds? I know my mind is like the Energizer Bunny with ADD. The average person thinks 50,000 thoughts per day, but mine certainly feels like millions and millions are going crazy in my head. Oh, and that doesn’t mean that they’re intelligent thoughts or anything. Most of them are crazy stories or characters I make up or hypothetical situations with a .1% chance of happening where I have to make a huge decision that will decide the fate of the universe. A lot of it is just junk stuff though, i.e. worry. And that’s a bigger waste of brain cells than reality TV. One of the keys that I’ve learned to being interiorly silent is getting rid of worry. Think of stressful thoughts and anxiety as some doofus with a megaphone that won’t shut up. He insults you, doubts you, makes you feel bad about yourself, and just annoys you until you can’t take it anymore. And every time you listen to him, the megaphone gets bigger and bigger.
He’s like this @$&^!*$* from Duck Hunt. Grr.
So how do we shut this guy up? It’s simple: we have to shut up. Because guess what? PLOT TWIST. That laughing dog is your own subconscious! *gasp* And every time the dog – you – tells you something negative and you buy it, you’re cutting yourself off from hearing what God has to say to you. Why? Because God only wants to tell us positive things. Not like, “Hey, Julia, I’m letting you off the hook with that paper! Go do whatever you want to!” but “Hey, Julia, I know what you’re dealing with now and it’s all going to be ok because I love you and I will never leave you to handle it alone.”
That sounds like a pretty awesome message to me, but unfortunately, we let our crazy lives and all the worries that go with them get in the way of hearing it. So, what I’ve learned and what I’m telling you here is to think happy! And trust me, I’m not this type of person at all, although I’d like to be:
It’s more like having a realistic yet positive outlook on life. And yes, despite the awful, horrible crap that we all go through, despite the atrocious things humanity does to one another, despite that weight on your shoulders right now, and despite the fact that Degrassi is *still* on, we all have a reason to be positive. A guy that maybe you’ve never even met or talked to died for you, specifically. He didn’t die for the human race. He died for you. And He died for your mom, specifically. For your brother, specifically. For your friend. Because He loves each of us personally and intimately. And here’s more good news: you can trust Him with everything. You can trust that when He says that He’s there for you, He will be there. Basically, you are never, ever, ever alone. So finally, being truly silent isn’t equivalent to becoming a mime. Being truly silent is having a heart that blocks out the noise of negativity we try to tell ourselves and is constantly in union with God. It’s almost like an unending phone conversation with God without the awkward silence on either end when you run out of things to talk about. Sometimes it’s just knowing that He’s on the other line. In our crazy, busy, noisy world, the silence of God is what gets us through with joy and peace.