Since I can remember, the month of May has forever been characterized by great readiness for summer. The end of spring has never arrived without an intense and unfailing desire for a break, for a long rest, for a season of pause rooted deep in my worn out soul. This year was no different, I could have put money on the fact that summer would be greeted with a big, fat, excited, “finally!”
I also can’t remember a summer in which by July I wasn’t antsy, ready to get going. Get what going? Anything. A filled schedule, a faster pace, a re-immersion into community. I’m noticing more and more in myself this annual pattern of discontentment in which I long for summer, then once summer sets in, I’m desperate for the dawn of busyness once more. Anyone with me?
Summer brings and consists of a variety of unique factors for you, college students. I don’t think I’m alone in the struggle of summer, however surprising or shameful it might be. The return to a broken home, the polar transition out of the nice warm pool of busyness into the frozen waters of idleness, the seclusion from the safe and rich community you have at college. It might be a tough weekend of boredom or innumerable weeks of loneliness and anxiety. However you are experiencing hardship this summer, you are not alone.
While I am thankful for plenty of really enjoyable and exciting moments and days this summer, for rest that has been constructive and healing, my heart concurrently repents of the distrust, anxiety, discontentment, and fear that has consumed me in this season of change and stillness.
You might be like me, without busyness and noise to hide behind, you might be hurting this summer because the brokenness within that’s easily avoidable during the school year, is now undeniable amidst the slowness of summer. Summer might be when you are finally able to hear your loving Father begging you to collapse into Him. And, convinced that you just can’t do life on your own, you finally want to.
In your restlessness, dare to sit at the feet of Jesus and learn the joy of resting in Him. In your boredom, gaze at your Savior and let Him restore in you the wonder and fullness of your salvation. In your loneliness, face your Groom to see the pleasure that union with you brings Him.
Use the silence you’ve been given this summer to actively remember God’s faithfulness to His people, and His faithfulness to you. And in light of God’s endless grace, take all of yourself to His throne. Bring with you all the stuff you’ve seen this summer that you hate about yourself: your insecurities, anxieties, sufferings, idol-worshipping, and emptiness. In Jesus, you are safe to come out of hiding this summer. It is certain, you will receive nothing but the redeeming love of the triune God.
“…even the wilderness is His, and He is there.” –Sammy Rhodes
~ by Caroline White (firstname.lastname@example.org)