When I graduated from college a few years ago, I joined The Navigators EDGE Corps ministry internship program with high hopes. I love college students, enjoy investing in women’s lives, and am not afraid of meeting new people, so EDGE seemed like a good fit. And it was in some ways! But the experience also provided a huge “opportunity” for my brokenness to be put on display for the world—and the picture was not pretty!
By the end of my second year of EDGE, I was so tired that almost nothing excited me anymore, and my family was pretty convinced I was depressed. Apparently, that’s what equating your value with your “success” as a missionary does to you. I had to step away from campus ministry for a while so I could rest, meet with a counselor, relearn where my value comes from (hint: NOT my performance), and let God heal my thoroughly downcast heart.
I’ve spent the last year and a half pleading with Jesus to help me understand what happened…Did this all take place because I wasn’t proactive enough in dealing with my broken value-system? Was it because I doubted the Bible in the midst of deep discouragement? Could this all happen again in five years? What do I need to do to prevent that!?
As much as I would still love to know the answers to those questions, I think God might be asking me to trust that He’s enough even when the things I think He wants me to know are still entirely mysterious. Maybe when I sang, “take me deeper than my feet could ever wander,” I was asking Him to bring me here…. Where my mess and my fears are on the table, and He is still enough.
It seems as though life after college generates hard questions for just about everyone (by the way, I’m not talking about the questions that are clearly answered in the Word). And I do think we should take those questions before the Lord. But maybe we also need to realize that He might not give us the answers we’re hoping for…and we might just learn to trust Him in remarkable ways that we never would have without those unanswered questions.
Amy created a Spotify playlist to encourage you. Sign-in, search for “amykozlarek” and listen to “Refresh Playlist.”
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Amy recommends: “I Will Wait” by Mumford and Sons, “Gratitude” by Nichole Nordeman, and “I Shall Not Want” by Audrey Assad (to name a few). Enjoy!
(just for reference)
Full Spotify list:
Desert Soul – Rend Collective
Mercy – Phil Wickham
Anchor of Hope – Ellie Holcomb
You Speak – Audrey Assad
I Shall Not Want – Audrey Assad
My Lighthouse – Rend Collective
I Have Made Mistakes – The Oh Hellos
Running In Circles – United Pursuit Band
Beloved – Tenth Avenue North
Sailboat – Ben Rector
I Will Wait – Mumford and Sons
Desert Song – Hillsong United
Fill Me Up – Jesus Culture
Oceans – Hillsong United
Far Kingdom – Gray Havens
Never Once – Shane and Shane
Gratitude – Nichole Nordeman