As many of my readers already know I have moved back home for my final semester for student teaching. Along with that I have also been working at my local ski area teaching ski school. Now before I go into my story and main point, I just want to share a simple gratitude.
My biggest fear about moving back home was losing the awesome faith community, but God has provided. I still haven’t found that community of people my age, but my family has been so helpful. Every night my family and I have been reading the bible with Father Mike Schmitz podcast. That alone has been a game changer. Not only that, but on my way to school I pass right by Creighton’s chapel. Since it’s right along the way I stop there every morning for an hour before school. Even though I have to get up at the crack of dawn to get there and I struggle to stay awake, I am so happy to be there. I was concerned that I would start to fall backwards since I wasn’t living right next door to Newman and living amongst future saints. Yet here I am, the Lord has truly provided and I am so grateful.
Anyways moving on to what I really wanted to talk about. All week I have really been meditating on themes of family, love, father wounds, brokenness, etc. It didn’t all come together and connect though until today when God spoke through the hug of a 4 year old girl. After staying up till 2 am putting ski boots away last night, I was not super excited to drive out this morning. Upon arriving I was told I was going to be working with the little shredders. Little shredders are the 4-6 year old skiers and boarders. Little ones are cute and all, but there’s a reason I want to be a high school teacher haha. It honestly was not all that bad, I was just tired. Anyways I end up with this one girl in the group who is clinging to her mom and sobbing. Eventually I got her to let go of mom and come with me. She cried the whole 20 minutes I was with her, but yet it was such a spirit filled moment for me. Literally there’s a 4 year old crying, I’m exhausted, kids are falling over as they try to balance on their skis, yet that moment resounded with God’s voice and complete and total peace. Here’s why. This 4 year old girl would just be laying on the ground for several minutes, then standing for a brief moment while I moved her feet into position just so she could ski two feet before diving back in my arms screaming “I just want a hug”. It was that scream over and over of “I just want a hug”, and then having that girl come dive towards me and give this deep and sincere hug as if her only relief was to held tightly in my arms. This happened three times by the end of the lesson, and everytime she laid her tired little head upon my shoulder I thought, is this not the most honest vulnerable cry that the whole world is screaming. Does not our every day work, relationships, and existence cry out to be loved? Is that not what we were made for?
Since the beginning of time Satan has whispered lies to convince us that God does not love us. Look at Eve in the garden. The serpent did not try to convince her that God was not real. No, he worked to convince her that God did not love her. He was clever, he knew if he could convince them that they were unloved, he could strip them of everything else. And alas they knew they were naked and they hid from God in shame. Now I really want to wrap my thoughts up on this one, and put this big conclusion, but I want to leave this door open. Because there are a thousand ways I conclude this, and I could go on to explain the common patterns of brokenness and sins in the world, but you already know that. Instead I want you to think about that four year old girl crying out to be hugged by someone she just met. That cry is the cry of the whole world and even your own soul? People are longing for the love of God the Father and they don’t even know it. They don’t need you to save them or solve their life problems, these people simply just want to be loved. What are you going to do about it?
I have this feeling that this cry for love is going to be a theme for this year, not that it wasn’t there before. Maybe it’s because it’s the year of Saint Joseph and this world is so full of father wounds and abandonment. Or maybe it’s because I am headed into a year full of people who I have yet to meet whom I will be spending a majority of my time with (between NY and student teaching) that everyday I will have the privilege of being able to love. Either way I’m here for it.
Lastly I just want to take a moment to thank you for reading these. Two years ago at this time I started writing my book that I recently published (“Where Are You Going?”), and this time last year I wrote my first blog, now here we are. I honestly thought I would not publish that book or continue my blog this long, but I did it. I came so close to ending my subscription which would have permanently deleted my blog back in December, but after encouragement from many of you guys I decided to continue. I was reminded why I do what I do, and thought if it so much as leads one single soul closer to God it’s worth it. I am also very excited to share my journey of student teaching, and then moving half way across the country with all of you this year. From the bottom of my heart thank you. I love y’all so much.