The recent memory verse from Psalm 46:10- Be still and know that I am God- has popped into my head often over the last week. In a time of so much uncertainty, both in my own life and in the world around me, it is comforting and challenging to know that I am not in control. God has reminded me that he knows my situation intimately, that he knows the outcome, and to trust that he is in it. He has not promised to change my situation or make things smooth, but when I trust Him and quiet myself, I am changed.
This week’s memory verse is also very meaningful to me: Joshua 1:9. It says, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
When I first read this verse, I was a junior in high school. I had spent my sophomore year in Minnesota, immersed in an environment where my faith had grown by leaps and bounds, where I was surrounded by peers and adults who lived out their faith, who prayed with and for me, who were honest in their struggles and cared about mine.
When I moved back to Indiana at the end of the school year, I felt isolated and lost. I didn’t know how to deepen my faith and continue on my walk when I felt so alone. I didn’t feel strong enough.
This verse came in a letter from a classmate who had been so supportive the year before, and it RESONATED. It hit me in the feels, you might say. It helped me remember that no matter where I was, whether in Minnesota or Indiana, whether at home or school, no matter what was going on in my life, no matter my state of mind or strength of belief, no matter who was around me, whether I had a single friend or not, GOD WAS WITH ME.
This gave me comfort. Though I still felt like I needed peer support, I recognized that I was not alone and abandoned. Classmates and teammates in Indiana started reaching out to me. Around this time, I was invited to attend a LOG retreat and join Team. God used those friendships to show me His love. Remembering the verse also opened me up to seeking the support and advice of my parents, who were then and continue to be excellent role models for living out the Catholic faith. It allowed me to be brave, to allow myself to experience other opportunities and deepen other friendships, because I knew I was not doing them on my own. I joined groups at school, like yearbook and chamber choir. I volunteered to lead worship at the school’s youth group. I initiated conversations with people. I let myself be loud and outgoing when that’s what I felt like doing, without fear of judgment from those around me.
Though I may feel week and scared, God is with me, and His strength gives me strength and courage.
My challenge to you this week? Take time to reflect on where you are currently. What are your struggles and triumphs? What is going on around you? Do you see God in it? Look for Him with all your heart, and I promise you will find Him.