In early September, I hopped on a plane and flew to Indiana for a college adventure! I am completing college through a very unique experience. Most of our bachelor’s degree (which is completed in about two years) will be accomplished through taking tests that count for credit.
When I was at the college campus in Indiana, it dawned on me that my degree is sort of dependent upon whether or not I pass the tests. Yes, if you don’t pass the first time, you can retake it or you can even rearrange your schedule to take a different exam instead. But what happens if I fail??
God enabled me to pass the test I took while in Indiana. I think He did so to give me confidence in Him, knowing He will grow me through this college experience. He is high above any quiz and He is independent upon the outcome.
After finishing my test, a group of us students waited in the hallway for the rest of our classmates to exit the testing center – to congratulate them if they passed or encourage them if they did not. When one classmate walked out of the testing room stating he did not pass, in the few moments of tears and prayers that followed, another classmate, Stephen Reeves, uttered these words to him:
“Don’t let it define you.”
Though he meant to cheer up the particular student, I felt uplifted by his words as well. A little over a month ago, I took my driver’s license exam. I was extremely disappointed since I did not pass. I felt like I failure. I felt so dejected. I felt very downhearted. I was ashamed and didn’t want anyone to know about it. So, I just simply didn’t tell anybody. A little over a week later, I tested again and passed – no one has to know I failed, right? But God wants us to share about our failures and our successes so we can encourage one another and give all the glory to Him alone. Just because we don’t “win” on our first try, does not give us a “failure label.”
In life, sometimes we fail, we lose, and we don’t succeed. However, “Don’t let it define you.” We are still beautiful in the sight of the Lord whether we pass or whether we fail!
Our identity is not in our mistakes. It’s not in our past. It’s not in what we did or did not do. It’s not in our successes or failures. As children of God, thank the Lord, our identity is only in Jesus Christ. We are not defined by anything we do or anything about us – it’s all about Him!
This is what I’m holding on to as I continue in this test-taking college experience. I’m trusting God will be with me whether I pass or whether I fail. This is all as a testimony to His greatness and His glory. Let’s learn to praise Him in our mistakes and in our successes! I’m choosing to let go of feeling shame over failing a test – because my identity is in Jesus.
What can you let go of because your identity is in Jesus?