Leaning into the Wind…
We’ve officially reached that point in the semester; our grades are hanging in the balance with the approach of final exams and papers. Prepping for summer jobs, internships, and trips consumes our spare time. And, let’s be honest, sometimes we think that Jazzman’s could never have enough caffeine in stock to keep us awake for those long nights of studying. Even our Spring and Easter breaks were consumed by the overflow of school work that accompanies this time of the school year. With only a few weeks left in the semester, if you would say that this accurately describes your life, know that you are not alone. In the words of Troy Bolton and his high school colleagues, “we’re all in this together.”
However, knowing that we are all going through it cannot be enough for us. Misery loves company, but what if I told you that we didn’t need misery to enjoy company? What if I told you that instead of struggling through these last few weeks you could finish strong and energized? What if I told you that you don’t need to give way to the overwhelming tide of stress that is so prevalent on college campuses this time of year? If you would like to know the secret to these things, I invite you to keep reading.
I once had a friend who was a musician. He would often struggle through memorizing complicated pieces of music, which, as any musician can tell you, is no easy task. When I asked him how he accomplished the memorization, he told me he would imagine the song was like a story, the plot rising and falling with the dynamic of the music, the characters dancing to the rhythm of the melody, and the resolution occurring perfectly in time with the ending of the song. Instead of focusing on accurately playing every little note, he learned to feel the emotions of the song. This prompts me to ask myself: have I learned to feel life instead of just playing through it?
Often times I find myself going through each day with a checklist of tasks I need to get done in my head. While this can keep me organized and on top of my work, it also keeps me from enjoying the little moments in life that could bring me so much joy. I race from one task to the next and rarely take the time to stop and feel life. In the middle of my day, it often seems like I don’t have enough time to get everything done if I take the time to pause and enjoy a moment. But, I have come to the realization that if life is truly worth listening to, it deserves a moment of my time to stop and listen.
While college can be stressful, remember the melody of life right now is different from any other season in your life. Listen to it as much as possible, and learn to appreciate even the rough seasons.
- When you are with your friends, learn to see their personalities and love them for their differences.
- When you are in class, appreciate your professor’s wisdom and passion.
- When you are in chapel, observe and rejoice in all the different ways your brothers and sisters worship our Lord.
- When you are in the dining commons, set your phone aside and enjoy the company of those around you.
Instead of fighting the things that happen in life, lean into the wind a bit and watch your trust in God flourish. Don’t resist the hard times, but rather learn to enjoy them. Embrace the rhythm of the season and dance to the melody. Ecclesiastes 5:18 – “It is good and proper for a man to eat and drink, and to find satisfaction in his toilsome labor under the sun during the few days of life God has given him-for this is his lot.” (NIV)