Sunday, September 12, 2010

Just Because...

I knew, I knew, I knew, that I wouldn't last. I get so caught up in "stuff" that I forget about these little projects I start and they get abandoned along the side of the road. (The hypothetical road that is my life, of course!) So, camp is quite obviously over and I did not blog about all the weeks.

I want to share this story. I don't really know why, but it is a blessing to me, and this is one instance when God really showed Himself to me.

I am one of those strange people who, if I could afford it, would spend my life in a the student, NOT the teacher. I really, really, REALLY love school. When I graduated from Windsor Hills Baptist School in 2005, there was never any question where I would go to college. I always knew that I was gonna take that short trip across the parking lot to Oklahoma Baptist College, and that's exactly what I did. I spent four years there and enjoyed (almost) every minute of it. (Seriously, even people who LOVE school get tired of it sometimes.) I made great friends both of my classmates and teachers, and formed an invaluable friendship with Mrs. Kathy Whittington, who teaches all of the methods courses. Still, after being out of OBC for over a year now, I find myself emailing her or finding her in church to ask her this or that, or share some story with her of what's happened to me recently.

During college, I began working for an "inner-city" school on the northeast side of Oklahoma City. I had the opportunity to start working pretty closely with a couple of the special needs students there. I loved it. This little idea started forming in the back of my head that maybe I could find my place working with kids like these all the time. I didn't tell anyone about it, just let the idea roll around in my head. Then, one day in one of Mrs. Whittington's classes, she made this truly remarkable statement. (It was remarkable to me, anyways!) She said something to the effect that there is a real need in Christian schools for special education programs..."and I believe that God will touch one of the young lady's hearts here to be the person that makes this happen." I kind of looked out of the corner of my eye. Our class was small - 4 girls. My though process went something like this: Well, if she believes that it is someone here, that narrows down the playing field...wonder who it could be? Is it her? Maybe, her... Then my inner self got tired of my guessing game and said, "HEY, NUMB-SKULL!!! IT'S YOU!!!" (My inner self loses her patience with me a lot. I guess she thinks I should be a little quicker in my thought process.) So, still without telling anybody, I started looking into the possibilities of making it happen.

I was a senior. I had to finish that semester, complete my student teaching, walk across the platform, smile for Bro. Shank's camera, and I was done. When I started looking into going back to school, I didn't want to start over, so I was looking specifically for schools that would take my credits from OBC. This wasn't easy. Colleges just don't accept credits from unaccredited schools. I got some very nice rejection letters, and one very hateful email from an admissions counselor telling me that if I had wanted to transfer credits I should have gone to a "real" college and not wasted four years of my life. She also advised me to not waste my time finishing at OBC and just go ahead and get started somewhere else, since it was obviously going to take me four more years to get where I wanted, and I would get more money in scholarships and grants that way.

I was discouraged. I truly believe that God wanted me at OBC, and I really believed that He was leading me down this new path that I was trying to take. If it was going to happen, I was going to find somewhere that would give me credit for the work I had put into the last four years. I didn't want to believe that God would make me start over. By this time, I had told my mom what I was looking into. She told me the same thing. "Find someone that will take your credits." I really wanted to give up. I had heard back from all the admissions counselors except for two. I wasn't optimistic.

Then I got this email. It was from an admissions counselor at Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Oklahoma. She didn't tell me if they would or wouldn't take my credits. She just told me to get an unofficial copy of my transcript and send it to her. I did. A couple of weeks later I got a letter from one of the deans at the school. They were willing to transfer all of my credits...all 135 of them.

I am starting my second year at OBU, and loving every minute of it. It's a whole new world. Having gone to school on the same parking lot from 5th grade all the way through college, I experienced a bit of culture shock, for there really is nowhere else on earth like Windsor Hills. But I really believe God worked all this out for the best. I am attending a "liberal arts" college where it is not one bit uncommon to see someone reading their Bible (actually, it has been a required textbook in 4 of my classes). I sit in an earth science class where normal college textbooks would describe millions and millions of years ago, yet my professor starts class off with scripture, and talks about how science itself gives proof of the Creator. I have new friends that I know pray for and with me about my problems, no matter how small.

After receiving that email telling me that no school would ever accept my credits, I was ready to give up and just start over. Attend whatever college I could afford and deal with it. But I'm kind of stubborn sometimes, and I like to prove people wrong. In this case, it was a hateful admissions counselor who told me my choices were stupid and my education was worthless.

God worked everything out for my good!

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
~Romans 8:28~