I’ve written a lot about my life on Sounds of Hope. I’ve talked about childhood abuses. I’ve talked about being a single mother on welfare. I talked about being an abused and abandoned wife. There I’ve shared that I was a high school dropout, living on welfare, in a trailer with three small children. Not exactly the material for success in life. Certainly not someone you’d say was likely to succeed. But God...
Yes, but God. It’s always but God… He seems to see us differently than everyone else. He sees our potential and gives us dreams. Then He gives us a hope that we might fulfill those dreams. Then He gives us faith in Him and His ability to get us to those dreams. And He gives us strength.
This summer I took another huge leap of faith or stupidity – there are days I wonder which it is, faith or stupidity? I started a doctoral program. While I do ask myself sometimes is this just a stupid dream that I am too old to have, deep inside, I know differently. I know that God has put this dream inside of me. A dream I’ve had for many years, many, many years.
So this summer I did a lot of research. I probably have read around 4000 pages of material. I’ve produced a 103 page annotated bibliography. I’ve struggled through a position paper which still needs tweaking. I don’t think the tweaking will stop anytime soon as we are being taught to write an academic argument and that will take a while. So I’ll be editing, and editing and tweaking. Then I’ll be reading and reading some more and adding to the monstrous bibliography.
I’ve also produced a Curriculum Vita which is a fancy resume where you go on and on about yourself. Mine was six pages. Not because I accomplished that many great things but because I am old and had a lot of experience.
I don’t know where this is going – do we ever know really where God is taking us? We just sort of get on the roller coaster, let God strap us in and go for the ride. We let him take us on a GREAT ADVENTURE.
In the process of all this reading and living in a dorm on a college campus for the first time, I’ve found new hope. I may be old but God isn’t finished with me. Like Sarah, I laugh at times to think that God still has more for me to do or that doors will open.
This doctoral program really got into my personal business this summer. We were pushed not just academically but personally. We were pushed to look at ourselves, know ourselves and change ourselves. One of the biggest changes for me was I committed myself to exercise. I am now doing 5 miles in a half hour on an exercise bike, 6 days a week. My goal was 20 minutes 3x a week. Most of us don't think about our physical discipline as part of our spiritual discipline. But it is. We are the temple of the Holy Spirit. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) You can see a little video I made for class here. Turn the sound on to hear the song at the end.
So I'm on a new adventure. God willing in 2013 I'll be Dr. Joyce Lighari. I'll still be me, but hopefully I will be prepared for whatever God has next. For my "Isaac." What about you? I’ll bet you have a dream. God’s not done. What’s your dream?