Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Game Plan: Honor God

Looking back on my blogs from last year when I had surgery, I talk about how happy I'll be to play again, and play for God's glory. I said,

Despite the junk, I don't regret this. You have to get through junk to get to the good stuff. I don't have to keep telling myself that this is worth it. Now I do look beyond the crutches, the bandages, and the inability to do simple stuff. I see me training in the summer, looking forward to the season. I see me at soccer practice, keeping up with everybody (ahead of some). I see me playing in a game for as long as Coach needs me out there, not hindered by pain. And, most of all, I see me doing it all for God, because I know what it is to not be able to do it at all.

It always starts with good intentions, doesn't it? The thing is, I'm not real sure who or what I'm playing for now. I've been focusing on being injured, but evidently I'm no longer injured. My knee seems to be miraculously healed after nagging me for a good while. I'm definitely not complaining; I'm thanking God for it. However, am I showing that in how I play?

Saturday I kind of got frustrated, because my touch was severely lacking. I maybe got off a couple good balls. Despite not playing well, I should have had a better attitude. Getting frustrated did not make me play any better.

I have to move my focus from just playing well to playing as hard as I can because God has given me this ability to play soccer. I always cherish it most when I can't play; I need to be thankful for it when I am healthy, too - even more than when I'm not. I should have the attitude that I am blessed to be able to play soccer, and play it at a collegiate level. I believe we continuously forget that, and just complain about 6 am practices, ridiculous amounts of fitness, playing time, and/or petty feuds with the team. I pray to God that we remember why we are here.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

My Weekend

Huntingdon STOMPED Houston County Friday night. I mean literally. 49-7 stomped. Kellen played a lot, and even caught a few; I got to see a few of my good friends from home.

Saturday our JV team beat Hiwassee 2-0. It should have been a bigger defeat, but oh well. I played for almost forty minutes, and my knee (either one of them) didn't give me a bit of trouble. Now my main concern is fitness; I have a lot to catch up on in that area.

We didn't go camping Saturday night. Whatever. I still went home and spent time with Mom watching a movie and some Grey's Anatomy, ate Mexican with Mom, Kellen, and his girlfriend, and had an awesome talk with Mom about various things. Love nights like those.

I was about to leave home this afternoon when Kala called me and told me they were playing ultimate frisbee. I couldn't resist; I had to stop by for a little bit. It was fun playing, even though there were only six of us. Getting a little fitness in...

I'm trying to do homework now. Classes are making me feel stupid, and it's frustrating me. Physics, Calc II, Stats, Engineering... Blah.

From 8 am tomorrow till 8 am Tuesday, I will be without technology. That will include my cell phone, computer, and iPod. I'm not sure if I can use a calculator, watch, or alarm clock. I'm waiting to hear back on those items. It's for a friend who is doing an article in the Cardinal and Cream (UU's school newspaper) about students and their technology. I'm a little excited. Haha.

So, I have to do part of my physics test that's online tonight, because tomorrow I'm not allowed to use the computer. I'm getting on it...

Friday, September 21, 2007


Tonight I'm headed to Huntingdon's homecoming game to watch Kellen play in his senior year. The boy has grown up so much, it's amazing - and a little scary. Yeah, it makes me feel old.

Tomorrow we have a JV game against Hiwassee. I'm not sure if I'm playing or not, because I may be redshirting the season. I need to talk to the coaches today to see what's going on. After the game, I've asked the girls (the whole program) to come to my house for camping! Of course, it's not hardcore camping. I mean, we have a hot tub. Haha. It's going to awesome; I can't wait. Several of the girls seemed excited by the idea as well, which just makes me happier. :D

Oh, and I got Eisley's new CD and John Tucker Must Die. So sue me, I'm weak for media.

And chocolate.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Joy In Trials

This past Wednesday, I was scheduled to see Dr. Antwine once again about my knee. It had locked up on me the previous Thursday, which scared me quite badly. They took an MRI that evening, and we found out the results Friday morning. Despite the opinions that it might be a torn meniscus, it was not. My IT band showed up on the MRI as the only complication or injury. Which is good, really, but I was disappointed. I wanted something that could be fixed. Something that had a definite end in sight. What I got was a problem that doesn't want to go away, that isn't fixed with surgery or a brace. So I kept asking myself, what am I supposed to do with this? Wednesday morning, it hit me: I was supposed to accept it.

It's not a matter of saying, "Man, I'm injured. Guess I'll just hang on the sidelines now." It's about my attitude. That's what it's always been about, I suppose. This whole time I've been struggling with why this is happening to me. How can I make this about growing in Christ and not wallow in my own misery? I had no idea. I'm still not quite sure, but I do know that there is a reason for it. We don't go through hell on earth for nothing.

In church this morning, I began to think about why we go through trials. Don't think that I'm about to go all prophetic and expose a great revelation; I think this is something I just kind of realized. It's something every Christian has thought about, I'm sure. Especially when we come across verses like Romans 5:3-5 --

Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us.

I was first confronted with these verses in my freshman year by my boyfriend at the time. I was struggling with major frustration stemming from my calf issues (the eventually discovered chronic compartment syndrome). He gave me these verses, and it hurt me in a way. I thought, "How on earth could I be joyful about this? I just want to get through it, be done with it." However, they were in a way inspiring; I would be stronger because of what I was dealing with. It was a promise.

What if we didn't have trials? We would slide along through life with no speed bumps, no potholes, no worries, no frustrations.

But where would we end up?

We are born in sin. Just to curb that soapbox, we basically create our own trials - in a way. I won't get into that now, because that is not my focus for this spiel. Anyway, as a Christian, I came to the realization that I needed something more than myself to live and live well. I was hopeless without Christ. And having gone through what I've gone through, I know without a doubt that without my Savior, I would not be here today. I'm not saying that I have had even a halfway rough life; I am saying that I would have given up trying to make sense of everything - given up even trying - were it not for God pushing me forward, holding me up, telling me to keep going. There have been a few moments when I asked God to make me get back up, because I couldn't do it on my own. And He did. He made me return to my feet, fully leaning on Him. Do you know what that feels like? Sitting at rock bottom, waiting for something to appear, a foothold to reveal itself - and God takes your hand and pulls you back up. Just knowing that He wants to do that, yearns to do that, is in itself incredible. God was (and is) the only one who could save me. I couldn't do it, my family couldn't do it, my friends, anyone. No one but God. And although I went through fire to feel it, I believe I would do it all again: Because feeling that was feeling close to God, feeling His ultimate and unending love for me. And who am I to get that? Who am I to know what it feels like? NO ONE. But He wanted that for me. He had it all in His plan. I questioned Him, and He stayed faithful. He doesn't question me. He knows my soul, my heart, my all. He knows what I can handle, how much I can take. When I'm pushed past my breaking point, HE IS THERE. When I am weak, He is strong.

There is more to going through trials than the getting through; there are the moments when you get to use your experience, your heartaches, to help someone else. I've been talking with one of the younger soccer girls and have been able to say, "I know what you're going through, " to something she is struggling with. It's fulfilling. I am always looking for chances to help people, to be there for people. To know that I can encourage others that might be going through the same things I once went through is exciting. I have something to say! I have advice that comes from experiencing these things firsthand! So it's humbling now, to know that I have to be strong and faithful no matter what, because I want to be able to say that I did my best. I took the situation I was in and I found my way to God, I put my trust completely in Him. All that makes me thankful for my trials, for I realize now that it's not just about me. It's not just about me growing personally or spiritually. It's about touching others and helping them make it through - maybe even better than I myself did the first time around. This is the part where I assist others in learning from my mistakes. Why should I be the only one to learn from them?

So this past Wednesday morning, I was thinking about what the doctor would say. I was practically certain that I would be told to rest for a month or so. I was worried about it and thinking about how I would talk to Coach about redshirting the season. Then I stopped. I thought, this is ridiculous. Why am I spazzing about this? God has it in control. I don't know what He wants to do with this, but He always has a reason. Although I don't know that reason yet, I have to trust in Him and His plan, because He knows what He is doing. So I prayed that He would give me peace about the situation. I prayed that I would accept whatever happened - out for the season or not. I prayed that I would take this and grow and learn from it. I didn't know what was going to happen, I didn't know how I would become stronger through this: But I laid it down. I went to the doctor and he told me I could possibly play in a week. I wasn't positive that my knee would be better that soon after all this time, but I once again let it go. If God wanted my knee to be healed in a week (or less), it would happen. If not, so be it. I trust in my God, and my God alone.