Sovereign and Faithful

When asked to write for this blog, I was given the task to write about a single encounter I had with God that revealed more of His character. At first glance, this should be a pretty easy and straightforward topic to communicate on paper. I mean, as Christians, we encounter God everyday in a variety of ways, but I think it’s a matter of choosing to notice whether it’s Him or not. So it’s not because of a lack of encounters with God that makes this prompt difficult to write about. It definitely requires some deep searching through the experiences in my life story thus far, leafing through each page to see the Author’s sovereign intention in writing it out the way He did. 

My senior year of high school opened the same way as everyone’s— with excitement about the upcoming year and the need to savor every moment of it before we all went our separate ways. At the same time, at the forefront of every senior’s mind was the inescapable reality of college— from applications, to deferrals, acceptances, and of course, decisions. Several hours were spent researching schools, brainstorming and writing the perfect college essays, and triple checking every step of our applications was completed.

My dream school since eighth grade was Emory University, and when I received my early decision acceptance to both campuses in December of 2019, I was over the moon excited - so grateful to God for making this happen. My excitement quickly dissipated when I realized that I didn’t qualify for any need based aid or scholarships, and the cost of attending chalked up to a cool $70K a year. Because I applied early decision (binding agreement), I had to commit by the beginning of the next month or I would lose my acceptance. I had an incredibly big and important decision to make, and I only had a few weeks. The rest of my acceptances wouldn’t come out till March of the next year, but now it seemed like I had no choice. 

I grew increasingly stressed and almost regretted applying to Emory in the first place. The initial feeling of gratitude I had for God when I was accepted slowly transformed into a feeling of resentment and bitterness. Fear also welled up as I had heard rumors from online sources and people at school that I would be blacklisted for backing out of a binding agreement. My dad assured me that everything would be okay, and contacted the admissions department at Emory to see if I could get an extension on the decision. I should have just given my anxieties to the Lord then and there, but I spent most of my winter break dwelling on my circumstances rather than resting and enjoying the company of my family. 

The admissions officer finally reached back out to us via phone call the next month. He not only granted me an extension on my decision till March, but also assured me that if I didn’t receive any more scholarships by that time and had my sights set on another school, I could decline Emory’s offer guilt-free. I was so relieved and praised God for working so mightily despite my feelings of doubt and unbelief.
 
I ended up attending the University of Georgia, which may not have been my top choice or dream school, but is now a place I am grateful the Lord led me to. 

Through this experience, God revealed to me just how sovereign and faithful He is. Everything is in His hands and complete control. He knows the outcome before we even begin, and He works everything out for our good and for His glory. God showed me I was capable of making it into a school like Emory, but in His good and perfect will, He placed me at UGA.  I learned that sometimes God opens doors to show us that we are capable of achieving great things, but sometimes, He closes those doors to make way for the unexpected ones that lead to a better path. 

Thank you Jesus for being the author and perfecter of our faith, and having plans to give us hope and a future.

Author | Luvlan Lee

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