It’s been one week since I successfully defended my dissertation. I have to say, each day it feels like another 20 lbs of weight is lifted off my shoulders [insert deep sigh of relief here].
As I reflect on the whole process, I am encouraged. These past four years would not have happened with out so many of the wonderful people in my life…But most importantly, I couldn’t have done it with out Christ who strengthens me. I’ll spare you all some of the details, but let’s just say that the week leading up to my deadline (March 22nd) was one of the most grueling of my life. I know that I could not have kept up the writing pace (and quality for that matter!) on my own.
These verses in particular were of great comfort to me:
Philippians 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength.
Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
These years have been filled with both joy & sorrow, hardship & blessing. But looking back it’s clear that the Lord was there through it all. Challenging me, pushing me, encouraging me, admonishing me, loving me… giving me grace.
I pray that in these coming years I can use the gifts He’s given me in a way that is glorifying to Him, and as John Piper says, “He is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.”