Sunday, January 17, 2010

Keeping It Real

It's been too long since I've posted here, I know. The recent direction God has driven me (back to school to finish my pre-nursing courses) has kept me extremely busy. I have two five - credit classes, which is a lot for me to juggle along with my other responsibilities. The rest of the family have been very supportive, and I love them all the more for their sacrifice and encouragement.

It has been harder than I thought it would be to adjust to being in classes with people who are much younger than I. Many of them are younger than my eldest children. In fact, I guessing that the teacher is younger than my eldest children.

I didn't think it would make much difference, but I definitely feel the generation gap. I have been referred to as the "older woman" in class, with a breath of emphasis on the "old" in "older." My table has a large empty circle around it, as if my gray hair were a disease. One young girl had to sit by me the first day because the class was so full - but quickly remedied that at the next class.

I have dreaded walking into that room every time. Suddenly I'm in ninth grade again. Yes, me - the author and speaker. I'm surprised by the strength of the past to influence my present. Old insecurities ooze up from some long-gone, but obviously still-raw, sewage of high school memories and threaten to pull me into their smelly pit.

But it's different this time. Forty years ago, I didn't know the Lord Jesus. Four decades ago, I walked into each class alone. This time I have a powerful Advocate within me and at my side, encouraging me and strengthening me to offer to others the grace and acceptance I longed for and never received from my classmates.

Perhaps God has plans to expand my education in more ways than I anticipated. Perhaps He has used this time to expose old scars and insecurities to His healing touch.

Did I say "perhaps"? I'm thinking, probably.