fear not

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” Ecclesiastes 3:1

As the end of my sophomore year approaches, I am once again seized with fear. Question after question filters through my mind, “What will summer be like? Will I enjoy being in Norman taking classes or will I be lonely?What will next year be like? Will I lose friends? Will junior year be as great as sophomore year?”… on and on and on. Doubt creeps in and I begin to cling to every second of every day, not wanting this year to end. My heart was heavy and I felt like I was having to say goodbye to a loved one forever.

After being in a slump for the majority of the day, I decided to offer these fears and doubts to the Lord. I spent time in prayer, begging Him to filter my thoughts with His peace and promises. Later that afternoon, right before a final, my mind was flooded with scripture. The Holy Spirit brought verse after verse to mind. Each one for a purpose. He told me to lean not on my own understanding but allow the Shepherd to lead me beside quiet waters and restore my soul. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Sarabeth, I delight in you. I have not given you a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind. In Me, you can run and not grow weary. I am the strength of your heart and your portion forever. Run to Me! Trust Me! I love you.

I felt an overwhelming, undefinable sense of peace wash over my body. It is one of the most incredible experiences I have ever had. In that moment, I knew the Holy Spirit was overflowing within me, reminding me of my value and of His truth that is an anchor for my soul, firm and secure.

It was as if He was whispering, “Beloved. Be still. I am with you always. Lean into my embrace.”

I believe it is absolutely necessary to take time to mourn what you are leaving behind. As I reflected on this past school year, I was filled with gratitude toward the Lord and the people He placed in my life during this season. So many faces came to mind and my heart was filled with love for them and appreciation of their investment in my life. Countless memories, late night chats, ping pong tournaments, spike ball games, study sessions, and weekend trips came to mind. Rather than miss them and wish I could go back to those moments, I was content to remember how wonderful they were and how close they bonded me to my sweet friends. After every year, I am filled with mixed emotions. I have such a bittersweet relationship with change. But, this time is different. I can feel the Lord molding me and transforming my mind. Rather than wallowing in the fear of the unknown, He beckons me to approach the throne of grace and receive the peace that surpasses all understanding.

I am filled with excitement for all the Lord has planned for my life and for all the people who He will bring in and out of it. This Earth is filled with His wonder and I cannot wait to seek it out every day. Send me, Father! For wherever I go, You are there also.

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