Wednesday, 15 November 2017

I prayed and I stopped and I started again

Strike update; in as much as we are in academic limbo there's still hope. Today, we are smack dab in the middle of November, I am no academic registrar but we can still work some semester dates around the five weeks left of 2017. If last year they had the bright idea to schedule exams up until Christmas Eve, surely, a repeat of history wouldn't be so much trouble. Understand that I am not coming from a place of academic enthusiasm but more from a frustrated stand point. In five weeks, classes that are taught through group presentations, which by the way I have come to loathe while we are on the topic, can tear through a great chunk of the course work. The old school lecturers, who want to teach the syllabus from A-Z, if they are going to work day and night as affirmed by the union, five weeks is more than enough to ask for all the make-ups imaginable. Sure, make up classes aren't music to my ears but my frustration supersedes any type of comfort at this juncture.

On to today's post.

If you aren't already on the 40's series that Biko has got going on, your missing out. Yesterday's was about this one guy barely in his forties who seems to attract death to every one he loves; first his first born son, then his wife, his mother, second wife, another one of his son's . Biko asked him something along the lines of his relationship with God, how it has affected him,how he kept the faith.The simplicity of his answer was quite striking, "I prayed and I stopped and I started again. At some point you just let Him do what He deems best. "

A few posts ago, I had mentioned how with the lull that has followed my "countless" applications, picking up my Bible for my Daily Devotion is not as easy as it was. Up until now, I didn't realize how self-centered I sound.Here is a man whose lost two wives, two children and a mom yet he is still reminded of the presence of God in his life, then there's me. I get no response from a couple of job applications and I have pretty much subjected God to playing second fiddle in my life.

Looking back on the past couple of days I can barely remember when I sat down for some purposeful time with God. Earlier this year, I discovered the difference  it makes to write down your prayer as opposed to just having it sit pretty in your heart. For one your head space remains centered and you are able to decipher what you really want God to do for you, besides, pen and paper have always been really humbling. It requires from you time, energy, effort and focus. Looking at my Bible journal the last prayer I wrote down was in the first quarter of 2017.

There's a sense of desertion I feel. All of 2015 I religiously prayed, read my Bible and went to church. I was your model Jesus freak. I was also broke and employed which may explain my borderline desperate relationship with God. At the time, I didn't know it but I was pretty happy, even in my unemployment and financial disparity. May I reiterate that my academics were looking up, relationship with God was A1, I had nothing but time, organic free time on my hands which I used to read countless books and write three times a week on this space. My health was good but this was also the year that I got hit by a bad case of tonsillitis, so bad in fact, it shut my airway around the throat area, I still remember the look on the doctor's face of sheer disbelief that I could even swallow. Other than that life was looking up.

When I had finally met my financial windfall, it's just an alternative way of saying that I got a job and  subsequently a steady pay in my heart I knew I was deserving. I had done my bit; prayed, fasted, read my Bible the works and finally God had come through for His faithful servant. I am afraid that also came along with a share of entitlement and over confidence, so much so, I was under the impression that no bad things were supposed to happen to me, God was forever indebted to me. The level of conceit was undeniably well above and beyond the roof.

Like the tower of Babbel it all started to go south from there. The debut Working Girl chronicles pretty much sums it up and so does Surviving College from late 2015 up until now.

Round about this time my pattern when it came to relating with God mimicked the title of this post, "I prayed and I stopped and I started again" except this process was on repeat, on again, off again. I would flat line for weeks on end, maybe even months then out of the blue you'd hear the unexpected beep of a pulse. Sometimes the beep would be consistent and other times it would be a lone beep and all that would be left would be its echo.

More than that, I think I lost the one essential ingredient, faith. The guy in Biko's post went on to say that, "At some point you just let Him do what He deems best". Call it optimism, I call it faith from a deep founded trust.

Over the past two years I have let anxiety take center stage. When I do pray, I only let go and let God just a tincy wincy bit otherwise I am as clingy as they come. By nature, I am pretty worried over even the smallest thing. However now it's amplified to a whole new level, stewing within on the slow cook option.

In my current state of mind, which unnecessarily works overtime overthinking the simplest of things, given all the feedback I haven't gotten the future according to me is pretty bleak. An average life is what seems to be in store; settling for an okay job in a sub-par, by my standards, law firm, settling for someone who is not even my type(for some reason, this is the one that aggrieves me the most) and just falling into the rest of the protocol that's expected because of the surrounding circumstances.

Maybe, on the other hand, it's just your classic glass half full, half empty type of deal. Maybe all the feedback or lack thereof is a subliminal message to embrace where I am now. Maybe there is a sneaky opportunity for growth or this is a much needed lesson in learning satisfaction. Maybe the constant clamour for the next best thing is not so much ambition as it is greed. Maybe I have my heart set on the wrong thing and should divert my devotion to appreciation, acknowledgement but less desire. Maybe I should just let Him do what He deems best.

I feel that I can now return to my devotion with the right soulset, less expectations at least played down expectations for starters and these can be my stepping stones from here on out. The goal is to keep at it, if I stop then, I start again.

Have a good one!

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