Wednesday of the Second Week

Readings

Is 40:25-31

Mt 11:28-30

Reflection

The readings for this beautiful day of Advent communicate to me the unparalleled strength of our Lord. His strength is a part of His endless Grace that He bestows upon us, and inn reflecting on God’s strength, I am reminded of a time when I needed it most.

My transition to college tore me down. As someone who has already battled with anxiety, the feeling of having the rug ripped out from under me as I left my home state and my family terrified me to my core and kickstarted the panic attacks I thought I’d left in Oregon. Feeling as though I had no one around me to get me through, I returned to the ultimate foundation of strength, comfort, and unconditional love: God.

“He gives strength to the fainting; for the weak he makes vigor abound.”

For about two weeks, I came to Founders Chapel every single day. In a new city, surrounded by unfamiliar faces, the Chapel became my source of safety. Here in the house of the Lord, I was not alone. I was understood and comforted. Though I could not see the purpose for being called to San Diego or how I could get past the constant pain in my chest and pit in my stomach, I laid these troubles down in front of God and told Him they were His with which to decide what do to.

“Jesus said to the crowds: ‘Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Afraid and alone in the chapel, I turned my gaze to the Cross. The reason that God became man was to experience life as human. If anyone was to understand my pain, it would be Jesus. And if anyone was to carry me through, it would be Jesus. His love shone down on me, lifting me up and filling me with strength. 

“They that hope in the LORD will renew their strength, they will soar as with eagles’ wings.”

I turned my fears over to our Loving Father and was met with His grace. There exists no trouble too big for God’s loving hands. When obstacles become too big for me, I wholeheartedly trust the Lord to carry my burdens with me. I now see God’s works in my transition to college, in the beautiful souls I’ve met and in the ways I have grown. I hoped in the Lord, and I have soared.

Rachel Gulka, ‘23
Behavioral Neuroscience
Lake Oswego, OR