It’s been one heck of a journey but after 14 years of tug-a-war in my life, I’ve accomplished what I never thought I would, a college degree. In March my advisor told me that I could attend the Class of 2019 commencement ceremony in May. And beginning that day I began reminiscing about my life. In a split of a moment my life flashed before my eye like a black and white movie in slow-motion. Being specific to certain moments, yet reminding me how far I’ve come.
For a while my journey led me far from one of my greatest desires, finishing school. As a matter of fact, for a long time I even forgot about it. I dropped out of high school in my Junior year, married the love of my life at 18, became a single mommy of two at 21. I moved to Houston at 25 and had my third daughter. In my early thirties I had my fourth daughter Faith-Angelica, who a month and five days later passed away. Her 12th birthday would have been this month.
I started college at 31 and after a few obstacles here and there, here I am at 21+23 accomplishing that dream I never thought I’d reach. Between dropping out of high school and returning to school I raised three girls all on my own. It’s been one heck of a journey for me, but this journey while leaving me a few scars, led me to a better place and a better me. By no coincidence whatsoever, this chapter of my life reminded me of a Bible study I gave about becoming a lotus flower. Have you noticed how beautiful of a flower she is? Well, after learning a bit about them I realized I was a lotus flower.
Let’s put aside her beauty lets go a bit deeper. Lotus stalks grow as high as 6 feet, its leaves and flowers grow several inches above the water surface, but what gets me the most impressed by this flower is that she grows in muddy water and before we can see her, she pushes through all this mud to reveal herself, but not before setting root.
I am this lotus flower, because I’ve learned to stand strong knowing God is there guiding my steps. As I look at my past I’m encouraged because just like this flower I’ve overcame all the mud in my life. My fears, uncertainties, rejections, loneliness and most important myself. Yet God has comforted me when I needed Him the most, in my moments of weakness.
2 Corinthians 12:9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
During my journey many times I didn’t know where I was heading nor what to do, but just like the lotus flower, whose seed fell and set root in the muddy water, I set root and with time my tiredness went away, my fears because my strength and the rejections my motivation, so just like her, I produces a new me, a me who continuously evolved into who I am today.
It was all during this times that I faced unfavorable and difficult times that I was presented with the opportunity to get closer to God and grow into the person He meant for me to become. My favorite Bible verse, Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Has become the anthem in my life, a reminder that while I will never be trouble free, all I need to truly do is dive into His word and presence and He will take care of my heart. Now isn’t that a beautiful thought? And now I am a college graduate whose lotus pods may have dried up some time ago yet God used to make an arrangement of His greatest.
While I feel accomplished and overwhelmed by the thought of having earned a degree, nothing will compare to the beautiful feeling of knowing I am of Child of God, and that through Him I become a Lotus flower, strong, rooted and beautiful.
Your own lotus flower you too can become, if you just be reminded that you will overcome the mud in your life, in due time. Becoming one day unrecognizable while looking back at those things that one day you thought were keeping from becoming a spectacular beauty for all to admire.