Tuesday, November 17, 2015

"Backpacks and God's Love" by Kathryn Dewitt

There's a certain symphony to entering to the Christian Association that always makes me smile. The way the keys jangle or doorbell rings. The way the door creaks open. The way the CA steps creak as i make my way up the stairs to the Kitchen. But i don't notice the symphony today.

I'm here with one thing in mind, all the work that I haven't done yet for the week--the projects, presentations, readings, emails. These worries of the world weigh heavy in the form of my backpack. I don't go anywhere without my back pack, which has accompanied me since 3rd grade. Although it is no longer decorated with stuffed animal key chains, my back pack is the one thing that I know will hold all the things that I need throughout the day in classes, activities, and work. Notebooks? Check. Pens and pencils? Check. Charger? Check. Snacks? Check. Everything is where it should be, and correctly in order. No matter what, I can rely on my backpack because I packed it each morning with precision.

But my relying on my backpack is haphazard, because sometimes I forget to bring the assignment I labored hours for or the banner that everyone was counting on me to bring. Relying on backpack is relying on myself and forgetting the one who guides my steps. Yes, I have been given this backpack to carry the things. But God has given me something much greater that I can rely upon: God's Love. God's Love doesn't falter when I forget my notebook. God's Love is there when a zipper jams and I can't reach my PennCard.

And God's Love is letting others help me carry my backpack because I can't do it alone. God's Love remains when I ask to borrow a pen because I forgot one. God's Love envelopes me when I ask for help for the different mental health initiatives I care about so passionately. I cannot rely on myself alone (or my backpack for that matter) because I will fail. But God's Love never fails, and the CA is a community based on God's Love.

The CA's new seminarian, Peter, and Megan, the campus minister, recently mentioned that Princeton Theological Seminary has a tradition where students leave their backpacks outside the chapel. (Although I don't know if Philly is the place to experiment with leaving my backpack outside) this week, this month, this semester, I will leave the worries of my backpack outside of the CA. That way I can enjoy the symphony of entering the CA and take each moment to rely more on God's Love. 

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