I don't know how you feel, but when finals or a big project come around for me, it feels like I'm in the middle of an epic battle.
All projects are different, but projects usually start out promising for me, like a well prepared army. But as the battle ensues, I realize just how much I've underestimated my opponent or the amount of work that goes into the assignment.
But I press on.
At times I think that I see a looming defeat, but then that bright and shining moment occurs that helps me push on and make it to the end. The assignment is complete and the battle is won. Then there is a short-lived peace and satisfaction, but only until the next project or battle looms on the horizon.
I may be a little dramatic, but this is usually how projects and finals weeks feels to me. Emphasis on the word "usually."
This year for some reason, my finals week isn't just a battle. It's an all out raging war. And I'm not saying that lightly.
This semester's finals week is probably one of the most difficult seasons I have ever experienced. Mainly because my finals week includes three papers (two of them being anywhere between 6 to 12 pages each) and working on two films while working on support raising for Poland, paper work for my trip, trying to prepare for the trip spiritually, taking care of my responsibilities in my Christian fellowship, making time to hang out with the friends that I won't see for four months, working at my job, and more things that my brain can't think of.
It feels like I barely have enough time to sleep, let alone breathe.
Needless to say, it feels like I'm in the middle of a war (even though I've never really been in a war, and I've only seen what a war is like via movies or through reading books). But I'm guessing that this is what a war feels like internally.
Meaning, there is no certainty. Or solid ground. There isn't a victory in sight yet. The beat goes on.
Honestly, my little "war" is nothing in comparison to what other people face daily. But in the moment it feels worse, and I'm guessing that some of you can probably relate.
So what is one to do when she (or he) feels like she's in the middle of a mental war? When everything seems hopeless, and the end isn't in sight? When the battlefield is sometimes your own mind?
I think what helped me was reading through Ecclesiastes 3. I stumbled upon it while working on a paper for one of my religious studies classes.
There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
He has made everything beautiful in its time.
He has also set eternity in the human heart.
There is a time for everything and everything is beautiful in its time. Right now, I'm in the middle of a mental war as I scramble to complete projects on time, but that is the season I am in right now. This season isn't going to last forever. It's just going to last a few more days. Then there will be a season of peace, but there will always be more seasons of war in the future.
Everything in its time.
I can take heart that God is in control. He has made this war beautiful in its time, and when I'm finished, the short-lived victory will be sweet.
However, God has also set eternity on my heart like it says in verse 11, and what I really want and yearn for is eternal peace. But that is still a long ways away, but I've been promised it. So I know that it's there, and really that's the thing that is getting me through this week. Not that I can rest in a few days, because something else is bound to come up that will feel like another battle. No, what's getting me through this week is that one day I will get to rest eternally in heaven because Jesus won the real battle. And even though my work is far from finished, his work is complete, and that's the only work that really matters.
So I decided to take a much needed study break and right this post to remind myself that while finals week is hard, it's not the real war.
The real war has already been won, and I am a victor thanks to Jesus.
Shalom! I'm Madi, a laughter-loving, movie-going, spontaneous-dancing, follower of Christ. Join me as I seek glimpses of God's grace in the ordinary and everyday.
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She Laughs Without Fear