God is Still on His Throne

I like to have control and be in control of my life. I plan, organize, and format everything to fit perfectly so that I can have security. Sometimes I forget that I could do nothing without God first allowing me. I forget that God is in control and knows everything I will do before I even think it. And being this kind of person, God throws me a lot of situations that teach me to trust Him and His plan over my own. And that is precisely what COVID-19 taught me. This pandemic turned my life upside down, and I’ll give you a glimpse of how.

I was a Junior at Regent University and had experienced the best semester of my life. I found some amazing friends, loved my classes, and had a great job at the Regent Library! Every morning I woke up and was so incredibly thankful that I finally felt like my life was going well! It had been a long and hard journey to get to this point, but here I was, happy and alive. Little did I know that the week before spring break was the last normal week before the world stopped. Not only did my world stop, but it also flipped upside down. I came back to Regent from break in North Carolina and was quickly told that, due to the pandemic, I had to turn around and move off-campus. I only had a week to pack up, say goodbye and go home- 8 weeks sooner than I was supposed to.

To be completely honest, I have never felt so low in my entire life. In a single day, I lost my job, lost the rest of my junior year, and moved away from where I felt like I belonged and where I was happiest. I couldn’t fathom why God was doing this to me, why he would give me such amazing friends that I had waited for my whole life, and then suddenly take them away. Why would he give me such a great life and then make me move back home, I just couldn’t understand. My brain was split between knowing I needed to trust God and wanting to scream and cry at the injustice and pain of it all.

All this might seem silly and temporal to most, just college and friends and a part-time job, but if you know me, that was everything. My security, my plans, and my joy that I held on to so tightly for survival had just been ripped from my hands. I was left with nothing, and I was so lost. I genuinely couldn’t see how God could make beauty out of this mess the world was in. I should know by now that God can do ANYTHING. Because he did make a beautiful thing come from what I felt like had ruined me.

I didn’t have to wait long to see what God had in store for me. Usually, in a typical year, I would go home for the summer to spend some time with my family and work a job to save up for the next college year. But because of COVID, I got that sooner than I had expected. And because I was home for one and a half months, I felt like I could handle living somewhere else for the summer, which I never would’ve considered if it hadn’t been for COVID bringing me home. I started debating moving back to the Virginia Beach area because I had friends there. God placed so many blessings in my lap that was further confirmation that he was driving, and I was simply along for the ride, watching my life play out in front of me. He gave me an internship in Virginia Beach in the field I intend to have a career in, he gave me a safe, gorgeous place to stay, which will now be my home for another year. He gave me a part-time job that I love, and a fantastic family that supported me financially, emotionally, and spiritually through the scary transition. Last but not least, God showed me that HE was here for me. When I watched him place everything in my life perfectly, all I could do was stand in awe of this mighty God I serve.

I am constantly reminded of God’s sovereignty. Yes, COVID-19 severely messed up my plans and made for some frustrating, painful months. Yes, this pandemic is mentally exhausting, divisive, and world-rocking. But has God changed? Is he any less in control now than he was before Coronavirus? No. While the world around us is crumbling and filled with strife, God is STILL on his throne, and he STILL cares about us. He cares about me, so much so that he would bless me even when I was so angry at Him for the pandemic and all the havoc is wreaked. He broke me down and showed me that when I have nothing, I still have Him. Looking back, I realize now what he was doing in my life, and why I went through that difficult time. It drew me closer to him, it grew my faith and trust in my Savior. I never would be where I am today without the trials and the heartbreak to bring me to my knees.

From this experience, my perspective has really shifted, I am looking at the good in my life that God has blessed me with instead of focusing on the bad I cannot control. I am intentionally being thankful in this time when it’s hard to find a reason. God’s promises are still true today, so why shouldn’t we turn to Him with our anxieties, doubts and frustrations? Has your life been turned upside down? God hasn’t changed. Are you fearful about something? God is in control and already knows the outcome. Are you unhappy with life right now? God calls us to be content and to wait on the Lord. God has a promise for every single thing you have felt and are feeling. He hasn’t left us to figure out life with COVID on our own. He cares deeply about my life and my spiritual growth, so why wouldn’t he care for yours too?

I will leave you with the brilliant words from the song “Break My Heart” by Austin French (GO LISTEN TO THE SONG!) They perfectly encapsulate how I felt during the first few months of the pandemic and the lessons I learned through it.

“Every broken road, every shattered dream
All of the times I failed, You were grace to me
Now when I look back on my story
There is no way I’d know who You are
If You’d never let this world break my heart”

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