Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Strength of Faith ... With Some Grace on the Side.

Wow, what a crazy couple of days.

I think I'm starting to make some head-way with the police report and getting my car fixed. I finally called the officer that responded enough times that he did come through with the police report. I've been told by many people that I should report the officer for taking so long to come through with the report (and for losing it for that matter) but I'm having a hard time actually doing that. I ask God to grant me grace every single day and I should have the strength to extend that same grace to those around me. I don't know what is going on in his life - I think I'm just going to let it go.

Emory's technology systems drive me crazy some days. I had to e-mail my financial advisor for the main university and have them cancel my loans - I couldn't find a way to do it through our online system. And yet yesterday I noticed that I had a negative balance on my account, accounting for over $10,000 worth of loans. I got nervous because if those loans had gone through and were debited to my account then I didn't know if I would be responsible for paying them back. I went down to the financial office and they were confused - when they looked at my account it showed everything was normal and said that I was looking at a "snapshot" from before and not a live view. Go figure. But crisis resolved.

I think one of the reasons I've been more anxious than usual is that there is so much going on beyond my control, so many solutions just out of my reach. A lot of my frustrations this summer have been caused by people, events or actions that I couldn't control. As a Type A person, that is SO frustrating - you feel as if you're not in control of your own life.

As we fight through this hurricane season, I realize how lucky I've been in my life. So much of my life has always been under control. I haven't been at the mercy of "the system" or of someone else's actions and/or decisions or of Mother Nature. I've led a very comfortable life and, for the most part, have been in control. Frustrations and stresses have often resulted from mistakes that I have made. I'm not used to this. And I'm lucky. Those who are are riding out hurricanes, those who have been laid off and left behind, those children who have been born into poverty, those families who being raised in developing countries where options are limited - they all don't know what it means to be in control. I think I need to start remembering those people when my stress level starts to boil over due to circumstances beyond my control.

I took part in a wonderful program today - Rollinsteer, a service day that is planned for the first year Rollins School of Public Health students during orientation. I was asked to be a site leader and I brought my group to a homeless shelter that services men. The organization is quite large, but we were able to tour and help out a little bit with the emergency shelter and the transitional substance abuse program. We were even able to sit in on a 12-step class. Though the language was more evangelical / born again than I'm used to, or that I would use, I was amazed at the strength at which the men in the classroom handed their problems to God. It was incredible. What a testament to their strength of faith. My group had a lot of fun. We were there for just under three hours, but I think they saw their potential for service in their two years here and that was worth the long hours that we put in leading up to it.

On a final note, my dad was announced on Wednesday morning as the 2008 New Milford School District Teacher of the Year!! I am SO proud of him. He loves what he does and honestly treasures the fact that he has a job that loves so much. It's not a job, it's not even a career, it's a passion for him. I was upset that I couldn't be there to here his speach and be part of that special time with my family, but I know I need to be in Atlanta right now. I know the experiences that I'm gaining not necessarily outweigh those that I'm missing, but make it worth it for me to be spending three years of my life here. God is calling me not to a job, not even to a career, but to a passion. My strength of faith will guide me through.


Sarah :)

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