I’m halfway there.
Since recently finishing my sophomore year of college, people have not failed to remind me that I am halfway finished with my college career. Welp. . . that’s a terrifying thought. I did not think very much about reaching this point until someone mentioned it during finals and my stress level spiked.
Truthfully though, reaching this point is bittersweet. Friends and family graduate left and right and grades come back and the realities of the future begin to settle in. For high school and college graduates and current college students, the pressures and questions of what they are going to do with their lives and the thoughts and opinions of others begin to soak into our minds like a sponge. Those thoughts, opinions and outside pressure stay there making our thoughts heavy.
We then go on our own adventures, trying to put our life together and slowly add to our resumes and figure out finances. Indeed, those are the realities of life, but God is teaching me now that He is in control and I am not alone in this journey of life.
This semester I was a part of the costume crew for my college’s production of Pippin the musical. I absolutely LOVED being a part of the behind the scenes of the show changing people into costumes in the wings and making and organizing costumes as well. Thought I couldn’t be in the audience to watch the production in all its fabulous glory, I certainly took every advantage to watch the show from the wings. Tech week was a long week as those of you who have been involved in theater know. Long hours and late night runs to Arby’s ( #mozerellasticks ) became a norm. By the last song of the show, I had nothing else to do except watch the finale.
The first night of the opening show was magical in every way. It was a long week of preparation and the energy and the beauty of the evening was nothing like I had experienced before.
Pippin is a musical about this young man who goes searching for his place in the world or his “corner of the sky.” He searches for it in war, work, women, and more. But nothing seems to fill the void in his heart. A leading player and her troup of players help and encourage Pippin to explore these different areas to find some purpose or happiness in life. Within the second act of the play, Pippin meets his love, Catherine. He has found love with another, but he knows there is more out there.
At the end of the play, for the finale, the troop pressures Pippin to end his own life. But he can not bring himself to do it. He sees Catherine and runs to her and the Leading Player begins to take away their costumes, wigs, makeup, lights, and music. In the final moments of the play, it is dead quiet, Pippin and Catherine look at one another in their barest form and Pippin begins to sing. His voice is the only sound in the room because everyone is holding their breath. He sang these words written by Steven Schwartz:
I never came close, my love
We never came near
It never was there
I think it was here
I wanted magic shows and miracles
Mirages to touch
I wanted such a little thing from life
I wanted so much
Tears streamed down my face and I stifled a cry. The Holy Spirit met me in the wings and God whispered to my heart. I am always right here, Hope. How beautiful is His love?! That even when we search for everything else in this world for happiness, He is always here with love in open arms.
We all search and strive for our idea of the best for ourselves and what will make us happy. I definitely did some of that this past semester by overwhelming myself with responsibilities, positions, and applications, I became very future and career minded.
I allowed that to drive my motivation for the last few weeks of school and I lost sight of the purpose and intention. But during that moment in the wings, God reminded me that He wants His best for me more than the best I had in mind for myself. And so I trust Him. Because He was and always will be right here with you and me.
Isaiah 55:8-9 and 12 declares the word and promises of God.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. . .
For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace.”
In the wings, I was reminded of my hope. My Jesus.
I am halfway there. But I will not fear the future. Because I know who holds my future.