“Open the eyes of my heart Lord, open the eyes of my heart, I want to see you”
So it’s that time of year again for the post-summer school post. I’ve been wanting to and trying to post something on here for months but couldn’t quite work out what i was trying to say, and have actually been trying to write this post since Sunday so not sure where it’s really going.
The Thursday night at music school is something i always look forward to. A lot of people dread it – it’s colloquial name of the ‘greeting meeting’ probably gives away why that is, but i actually look forward to it. It’s real name is Reflections, and that’s exactly what it lets you do. I enjoy it because it lets you reflect on life – where things are at, how relationships are etc, but most importantly it’s a solid few hours where you can sit and really reflect on where your relationship is at with God. I’m well aware that you shouldn’t simply do this once a year, but there’s something about the atmosphere and the amount of supportive, clued-up, often like-minded people to talk to about things that makes it easier, and more special.
Now to be perfectly honest, I’m not sure i’ve been to a ‘greeting meeting’ and not cried. Maybe 1 out of 9 at the most. And this year I wasn’t planning to either. I was content to just sit and listen and wasn’t expecting much from it. To give some background and to save you having to search for last year’s post-ss post, i had been convinced that God simply wasn’t real. It was all too far fetched and unrealistic, and i found it easier to deny it all completely rather than try to deepen my understanding or comprehension of it all. A year on from then, my view has definitely changed. I know God’s there. I still have doubts, frequently, and i can’t even begin to explain or work out why I know he’s there, but He just is.
I know God’s there, but i really don’t understand how to let him in. There was a lot said last week about giving, or surrendering, your all to God, and i simply don’t have a clue how to do this. And i really really want to. Despite my reluctance to get involved, this year on the Thursday night i ended up sat on my own for a while thinking and really trying to talk to and connect with God. And i was getting nowhere. I was desperate to talk to someone but i’m terrible at asking for help..I always feel like I’m just annoying whoever I talk to, and quite frankly didn’t know who to go to. I was getting more and more frustrated and out of the corner of my eye I saw a friend walk past and seriously hoped they’d come and speak to me. Next thing i knew, he had sat down next to me and was nudging me on the shoulder. I was so relieved i could have cried right there and then! I’m terrible at explaining how i feel and talking about myself, but somehow i eventually managed to get there. I explained how i desperately wanted to let God in, but i didn’t know how. I’ve always had issues with feeling lonely. Part of that is because i’ve never really felt like, and still often don’t really feel like i fit in anywhere. But I explained that i was pretty convinced that the rest of it was because there was a gap where God should be, i just didn’t know how to let him in. I was pretty worked up but i think the main conclusion we came to was that I need to put in the effort. I’d made the first step by wanting to let God in, but i had to make an effort to do that. You wouldn’t expect to suddenly develop a really close friendship with someone if one of you didn’t put in any effort would you? The other thing I need to do, or stop doing, is ignoring God when he is very clearly there or working in my life. I find it easy to put things down to coincidence, and I need to stop that and realise when it’s God making things happen. For example, when that friend came and sat down next to me right when I needed him, it wasn’t just coincidence. God knew I needed help and support and that was the person he knew could help me most in that moment. And I’m so grateful both to God and that person for being there.
So that’s the next step for me – putting in effort to really let God in and to get to know Him. It’s all very easy to say you pray lots or read your bible often, but actually doing it takes time and effort and discipline, and it’s something I’m really trying hard to do better. I find it so difficult to keep up enthusiasm and momentum once that week of music school is over – all of the people who encourage me most in my faith I don’t get to see very often, so without that regular support it gets even harder, but I’ve read my bible every day since that Thursday night, and prayed every day, and that’s how I need to keep going with things.
A few people prayed with me last week (have you ever had someone sit beside you and pray for you? For me, it’s one of the most special, intimate, emotional experiences ever!) and if you’re that way inclined I’d really appreciate the odd prayer, because I don’t find any of this easy and I’m super scared my doubts will get the better of me and my faith yet again!
“You are holy holy holy, I want to see you”
Stay tuned for more summer school related posts soon…there’s so much in my head I just need to make it make sense on paper 🙂