about 13 years ago, my friends (Woodstock) graduated from Agnes Scott College, while I was in Haiti. I can honestly say that I did not think of them during those weeks in a little village outside Port au Prince. I was in the right place. How I got there, the mistakes that I made leading up to that time in my life, are impossible for me to get my brain around-- and so this, I chalk up to the sovereignty of the Lord. He knew. How? I don't know. It's funny-- maybe I'm just tired from the seemingly endless line of papers I have been writing, or maybe this thing in me that fights and itches to disprove those things I can't see or plumb is just getting more and more convinced that I am convinced and that's that, but I feel like I can't be bothered to worry about the things I don't get. Because there is this really deep stillness in me that is okay with the mystery. No, not okay-- I'm enamored with it.
He's beautiful. These days before graduation, I am meditating on the power of God to restore those things we thought were lost forever. If you had asked me 15 years ago how the Lord was going to pull the garbage I had made of my life out of the fire, I would never, never have been able to tell you. I wouldn't believe that He could have. It's like this today, right? We don't have to be dramatically off our rockers to not be able to figure out how in the world God is going to guide us through things-- why do we keep trying to figure out how miracles work when mystery is integral to their very nature? He surprises me with His committment to me all the time and His own committment to saving me every day.
One close friend of mine finished up her PhD this time last year, two of my professors are my age (one has more than one Ivy League masters, to go with her Ivy League PhD) and many of my friends already have at least one baby.... Am I behind? Am I on time? Would Don and I have met if we had had our collective butts in gear years ago? Did I damage possibilities years ago that are no longer destined to be part of my life now?
I don't know, but it does not matter (do you hear Meatballs? "it just doesn't matter! it just doesn't matter! it just doesn't matter!"). It just doesn't. This is right. The precious, amazing, beautiful girls I have gotten to share the last four years with are perfect. I wouldn't trade one moment with them to have been "on time" in 1993. In my heart, I see these little sisters and can't imagine my life without them. And the professors? These were the perfect ones. And the husband God gave me, to send me and support me and not leave me when I changed into a demon woman? Sigh.
What is this blog thing? I have a perfectly good journal back in the back, and I should be taking a shower, drinking tea and writing in my journal before sleeping for 18 hours and then starting the final push in the morning-- four major papers and a project nearly done, in 9 days...oy. But here, I think maybe someone else might struggle with why now?, and why like this?, and I would say, from right here, no worries. I would say, from a life that has been stinking fun and good but hard, and not nearly half way over, that it's so okay not to know which end is up sometimes. Go lay in the grass in the park and look at the clouds. Make cookies for firemen. Have a good cry. But remember that all of these things are making up who we are-- these things are the stuff of our future famous memoirs. It's okay, it's good, it's alright. There is a finer purpose to all of this.
As for me, I'm so happy-- and I'm so exhausted I could cry-- but I am so happy. I've been longing for this for so long, and now I graduate-- but not just for the sake of graduation itself: This diploma means that I am just that much closer to the vision I have had for so many years. It's happening.
God is a God of restoration.