It’s funny how life works.
You are born, turn old enough to go to school, start preschool then elementary and high school. For ten or eleven years, you know exactly what’s going to happen. You finish one year, enjoy summer vacation, buy new material, and begin the next one. Always a consistent routine.
But everything changes in the last year. You’re around sixteen or seventeen by now, and you know that after graduation you have to choose whether to go to work, to university, or learn a trade. If you’re going to work, you have to know where, with whom, doing what, earning how much. If you are going to study, which college, which major, for how long.
Out of nowhere, you—whose main concern was whether to buy gel pens or regular, or, even better, let your mother buy everything on the list herself—have to make decisions that will impact and change your life forever.
Smooth transition, isn’t it?
Obviously, you don’t know what you want because you never gave it much thought, nor were you ever given the freedom or opportunity to make decisions of such magnitude. Then you start to despair because you know that you need to choose a good school, enroll in a good major to have a diploma that distinguishes you from the other ten young people sitting in the waiting room for the job interview, and earn a good salary to be able to financially support yourself, and in the future, support a family and make your parents proud.
To make matters worse, all of your classmates already know which school to apply to, or where they will work, and you are the only person who responds with “um … I’m not sure.”
If you made it this far with your heart intact, congratulations! Now if you’re almost hyperventilating and all of this resonates with you, take a deep breath (really, do it!) and join the majority of humanity.
When facing uncertainty
I used the example of making a big decision after high school, but it could have been any scenario that requires facing uncertainty. It could have been an example about a single woman worried about when she will get married, or a major career change, or about having children. Or maybe the pandemic came around and uprooted all her plans! Now what?
The fact is that we all go through moments like these when we need to make a decision that seems easy for everyone else, but, honestly, not for us. And you know what? It’s all right.
Do you know that phrase that your mother keeps repeating? “You’re not everybody else?” Well, I’m not your mother, but I’ll tell you: you’re not everybody else.
That is something that I, in a way, took a long time to learn.
As soon as I found out my family was moving to the Ebenezer Missionary School (in Curitiba, Brazil), I realized that I would probably enroll. I had always wanted to go, and I would be moving there right after finishing high school. It was kind of obvious in a way. I say that today, but I didn’t feel it at the time.
I chose to go, and it was great! Not only because of the experience itself, but because during those two years I had the opportunity to get to know myself more. It was two years dedicated to the Lord, and He showed me a lot. He can do that for you too. You don’t have to go to Missionary School for Him to do that, but you need to take a break and ask yourself what you want out of life. And it’s okay if once again the answer is “um … I’m not sure.”
What to do when there’s nothing you can do
This is the perfect opportunity for you to have a sincere talk with Jesus. He’s kind of like an older brother/best friend that you can tell everything to, but that, unlike humans, He can really do something about it, from changing your parents’ minds to changing your own. Think that’s impossible? Trust me. He really does that.
Tell Him all your doubts, discuss things with Him, explain and repeat, and don’t worry because He is super patient, so you can speak freely! After you’ve vented, let Him take care of your problems. There’s no point in saying everything, but then getting up and taking your problems back. You have to leave them there, so He can resolve them.
Take a walk, enjoy your pet, rollerblade, play the guitar, or stare at the ceiling. Basically, do anything that relaxes you and allows you to wait for His answer. From time to time, He responds through that letter that was written before you were born. The one that is collecting dust or just for show on your living room coffee table, wrapped in a black cover with its name in gold letters.
Sometimes He just whispers the answer to your problems in your ears or responds through His creation. He has answered me so many times through butterflies that I can’t even begin to tell you! I mean, maybe, some other time.
At other times, and this is my favorite, He just changes the situation and adjusts things in a way that when you finally notice what’s going on, pfft! your problem has already been resolved.
He is very creative and arranges several ways to answer us. He likes to personalize His answers, you know?
Oh, and if the answer is taking too long for your liking, go back to step one and talk to Him again. You can repeat the process because He will hear and answer you at the right time. Be sure of that!
And if you want to talk to someone else while you wait, leave a comment below or reach out to us via Instagram @thegirlwrites.
With love, Evy