I’ve been thinking a lot about fear recently.
Maybe it’s because I’m graduating in three months and have no idea what I’m doing with my life or maybe it’s because I’ve been writing a paper for the past year (yes, year) about fear that was due this past weekend.
Well, it’s probably a heavy combination of both of those things because they’ve taken up so many of my thoughts in the past month.
Intensely studying fear through Gothic literature for the past year, and especially the past month, has created a huge space for me to analyze what terrifies me the most right now and how I’m trying to cope with that.
Which is what I’ve really trying to focus on recently. I’m finding that the more I recognize the core reasons of why I’m afraid of the future, the more I am able to stop being a stressed-out mess right now and confidently move forward.
It’s hard to admit this because it seems like something that should be obvious to me at this point, but right now I am absolutely terrified that God is going to stop being creative in my life.
Let me explain: during my capstone class I took in January, as we circled up our desks and discussed the reading, one of my classmates made an interesting observation in response to creativity. She said that oftentimes we live and think as if God stopped creating after the creation of the world.
This stuck with me. It’s been rattling around in my brain ever since. During chapel a few days after that class where we were provided a space to sit and pray in silence, I realized that all of my worries at that moment came out of this fear that God is going to stop being creative in my life after I leave this place in May.
Even though this past year has brought so much growth and joy and love, I know the deadline is quickly approaching and I can’t help but elevate the inevitable changes to come in my mind. I’m going to be graduating single, hopefully relocating to a new city, and having to take on life much more independently than in the past. All good things, but also different than what I’ve experienced.
And in the midst of such good things happening, this is where the fears start flooding in my overactive, overthinking mind. I’m not going to find a job. I’m never going to find close friends like this again. I’ll never get married. I’ll have to live alone. I won’t feel this safe again.
Somehow I got in my head that since I can’t even begin to imagine what my life could possibly look like post-graduation, God is just going to be done creating exciting things in my future. That since I’ve had a good run here, I’ve already used up my turn developing close relationships in a safe community, discovering my passions, and experiencing joy with people I love.
But what a lie this is. Because God never stopped being a creator and to dabble in the idea that He has goes completely against His character.
Just as God has proved to be faithful and creative thus far, He is going to continue to bring surprises and joys and community into my life.
So if you’re where I’m at today, with this irrational fear that today is your peak and that it’s all going downhill, stop. Because God is going to do things you can’t imagine and even though it will probably include some loneliness and confusion, it will also include extraneous moments of love, joy, and peace.
Our stories don’t stop the minute we graduate. Our narratives will continue in ways we can’t even begin to imagine, bringing people and opportunities and work that will make our lives just as rich or richer than they are right now. And even though I have a hard time believing that, I’m starting to trust that it’s true because God is creative and faithful and able to see past what we can’t.