The other day, a sweet little girl sat in my office with me. She continued to amaze me with her bravery. Her hands shaky with nervousness, she sat there and focused hard on the language tests we were doing. She chatted along happily, not letting her fear and anxiety make her miss this moment of connecting with another human being. To be honest, I so wish I could do the same.
There was this moment, though, that stopped me in my tracks. I have not been able to stop thinking about this moment. I had reached over to point something out to her. She looked up from her task and noticed the paper where I was marking her performance. Right then, her face lit up as she looked at me and said, “Look how many points I have!”
You see, I feel like I am often in that position. It feels like my performance is measured, put down on a scale of standards. I get nervous, and often anxiety starts to build up. I start to wonder if I am reaching the standard. Whether I am performing as I should be or falling behind. I wonder how many points I should be getting more to reach the standard of great. When I see an area that needs more work, I declare myself a failure.
What I forget, is that really — I do not need to be performing at the level of great in all areas in life. So I see that I need a change of perspective, and I think I am not the only one. We need that change of perspective — instead of reaching a standard of great, we want to reach for a standard of grace.
“being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6)
I keep reminding myself of this: that growing is a part of life. Sometimes, it can be harder to notice this. The fall and winter seasons in our lives, we easily forget to note as parts of the growing cycle. Sometimes, some parts need to die, to be left behind for new things to grow. All of this is a work begun by God. And God is a worker who always completes, always finishes what He has started. There will be a day when we finally arrive. Oh, what a glorious day that will be. But until then? We get to rest in grace, knowing that God is the one to complete even this.
This fall has been a season of growing for me. This has been a season of growing in skills, in knowledge, in abilities — all at the same time as I have stepped into the world of speech therapy. The great thing about being an intern, is getting to learn within safe boundaries while stepping into a world of responsibilities and challenges. And I know, that growing comes with growing pains. But though there may be growing pains, there is grace to cover it all.