Sometimes The Answer is ‘No’

It’s been about 5 months since I last shared with y’all what’s been going on in my life. My last post was an update on me and the plans I had for myself in the months to come.

Plans I️ wanted for the semester in school, my personal life, and in a career. However, God quickly reminded me that He is in control and even the plans we have for ourselves don’t matter when it comes to His plan.

The past two semesters I️’ve struggled with my depression and anxiety. The semester that just ended was THE hardest semester of my entire college career. Tough classes and tough professors lead to anxiety attacks and negative thoughts. But I️ knew my coping skills and tried to stay on my medication consistently and for the time being, I️ was managing. But that was short-lived…

At the end of September, another bombshell went off, after nearly 30 years of marriage my parents had decided to file for divorce. My world collapsed and came crumbling down.  I️ spiraled into depression, I️ didn’t want to see any friends, talk to anyone, and some days I️ couldn’t even get myself out of bed to go to class. I️ had no drive or motivation.

I️ became so incredibly mad at God for all of it. Why was He letting this horrible thing happen to my family? Why had He abandoned us? I felt alone, isolated, and didn’t know how to keep my head above the waves that were drowning me.

I️ put on a brave face, tried to act “normal” and have a positive outlook on things but on the inside I felt like screaming. Trying to get a grasp on my depression; trying to silence the anxiety in my head telling me over and over I’m a failure and not worthy.

So I began to pray harder than I think I ever have in my entire life. In the midst of the hurricane of emotions that was giving me whiplash, I clung to God closely, at this point it was my only hope. And I was reminded of the verse in John that reads “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” I trusted in the fact that He will never abandon us.

Then God tested my trust in Him when I️ realized I wasn’t going to graduate in December like I️ originally planned. When I realized I wasn’t going to reach that goal I️ felt like a failure and a disappoint to my entire family.  But, I very clearly heard God say, “It’s not the right time, wait.” The more I prayed for His guiding hand and the more I asked Him to help me through the hell I was currently walking through, the more I heard His voice and the more I trusted His ultimate plan.

It stung a little when I saw friends posting graduation pictures, celebrating their last day, and just being so excited to end this monumental chapter of their lives. But I chose to look at the blessings the Lord has given me; and now I️ get to thrive my last semester of college (instead of just barely surviving).

I was sad I wasn’t graduating on time like I️ originally planned. But I️ try to keep in mind “God is in control; and His timing is perfect.” There’s a reason I️ wasn’t supposed to graduate this semester. I’m not sure what that reason is but I️ pray daily that God helps me see the good in not knowing, the joy in the in-between and the meaning in the meanwhile.

And now, I️ get to go to Kennesaw sporting events, enjoy my last spring break with friends, and cherish the last moments of not being an adult. I️ get to experience the joy of college one last time before I️ enter the “real world.” I️ get to have a second to stop and enjoy all the blessings that the Lord has given me throughout my time at Kennesaw State. And the best part? I️ get to do it with my boyfriend and best friends by my side! How cool is that!?!

Through all of this, I’ve learned that I️ can’t be in the driver’s seat of my life- that’s God’s job. He is in charge and has a plan for my life. Trust. Unfortunately I️ had to learn the hard way that everything is going to happen, but in HIS Time.

I thank God for unanswered prayers and for saying ‘no’ to the things I want for myself because His plan in much grander than I ever could begin to imagine.

So here’s to 2018! The year of hard work, determination, and continuing to pray for God’s guiding handin my life! xoxo,Jess

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Washington D.C.

Last week my parents, sister Jordan, and grandparents, along with my boyfriend Bradley (Lord bless his heart) went to our Nation’s capitol, WASHINGTON D.C.! To say it was amazing is an understatement.

My sister planned everything out for us and she did such a fantastic job. The first night we arrived and we immediately hopped on the Metro and headed to Union Station for a night tour of all the monuments. It was breathtaking. All these historic figures, lit up like Christmas, truly beautiful.

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The next day was Smithsonian day. We toured the Natural History Museum, the National Museum of American History, and the Air and Space Museum. There were so many neat things to see and do in these museums, like the Hope Diamond, a GIANT squid that was found in the deep deep ocean, and some of the most incredible photos from the 21st Nature’s Best Photography Awards.

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