My heart is aching and my brain is turning.
Frustration is eating me away. Don’t get me wrong; classes are going well, my friends are great and I finally supplied our fridge with coffee creamer, which means I can stop buying cheap coffee. Life is good, but life is also frustrating.
I’m falling back into my same pattern of inadequacy and feeling like a failure.
Yesterday, I went to do my taxes for one of the first times in my life. I ended up calling my mom five times in the course of two hours, which is more than I normally call her in about a week. The tax guy had to repeat everything to me because I found myself saying, “What? Can you explain that again?” – Dumb. Stupid. Clueless.
Every Tuesday and Thursday, I play on an intramurals basketball team. Yes, I get that intramurals are just for fun, but I’m also a girl who grew up with three older brothers; sports were always meant for winning. So when every basket I attempt bounces off the rim, or when I turn the ball over one too many times, I have to remind myself to take a breather. – Failure. Screw-up. Air-baller.
Words are fun, but in the words of my friend Emma, words are also hard. Some people will respond with, “But you love to write, and those are words.” True, but when I speak there is not an eraser to take away mistakes or a backspace key to delete what should not be said. Sometimes I find myself talking way too much, never giving myself room to breath or let someone else do the speaking. And then sometimes I find myself not having any words to say, and I feel boring. – Bad listener. Rambler. Boring.
I’m slightly obsessed with Pinterest, and I love finding things that describe me 100%. For an instant, I feel like someone knows me. The same goes for personality tests; they put me into some sort of category, which allows me to learn a little bit more about myself. Except I’ve taken the same personality test three times, and I’ve gotten three different results every. single. time. WHO THE HECK AM I? Not even Myers-Briggs can determine that answer.
I’m frustrated, because all I want is to be good enough, to matter somehow, to know who I am.
The other night we had a mandatory dorm meeting (which I happened to love, holla at ya Aagard ladies), and we were able to hear a beautiful message on Psalm 139 from Brittany, a lovely alumni and friend. She emphasized how much God truly knows us; He knows us better than we even know ourselves (take that Myers-Briggs, God knows my personality type). But I still didn’t get it, because I like tangible things. I like personal letters that show people know me; I like people remembering my little quirks. It’s great that God knows me, but I’d like to actually hear it or see it.
So now I sit here frustrated, trying to comprehend that God knows me, sees me and loves me. And this is what I have come to.
God knows the nineteen-year-old girl that doesn’t understand taxes. He knows she hates asking for help, but still called her mom five times. God knows that same girl was beating herself up in the midst of a tense game when she missed the third basket in a row. He also knows she tells herself to shut up a lot for the fear of annoying other people with her constant words. He knows her failure, her defeat, her burdens.
But God also knows that
doing taxes made her feel adult-like and responsible.
flying down the court makes her heart pound to the rhythm of the dribble.
words are her love language.
God knows me and He knows you. He knows what makes your heart tick; whether its the sound of frogs croaking late at night or strumming on a guitar. God sees when you are at your happiest, but He also sees you when you failed a test and want to crawl in your bed to watch a marathon of Friends. God gets us. He accepts us. God may be a mystery to us sometimes, but we are certainly not a mystery to Him. When Britt had us read Psalm 139 aloud, a line that stood out to me was:
“even the darkness will not be dark to You;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to You.” (v.12)
Sometimes my heart and brain feel like they are clouded with darkness and muddled with clouds. I confuse myself and can barely figure out who I am as a person, especially this past week. But right now I’m taking joy in the fact that the darkness is not dark to God. Our confusing, mixed-up lives filled with so many quirks are not a mystery to our Abba Father. He sees past the dark walls, right through to us, and He gets us.
There’s definitely still a lot to learn about who I am in Christ, but I am so thankful for that simple gathering late at night with some of my sisters to hear the truth about God’s knowledge.
He sees you, friend. He knows you. Don’t forget that.