A farewell from the three musketeers: Justin, Scott, and Chris.
We can’t stop laughing about how we’re here now. As of September, Chris hadn’t opened InDesign in three years; Scott had zero writing experience; and Justin loathed delegating. We were all new—all unqualified. Oh, and the extent of our interactions between the three of us was a total of one Skype date. But 12 issues later we managed to have produced 12 decent issues. When we first met face-to-face in September, we had one week to put out our first paper. But instead of getting to work, we went golfing. This was the ultimate source for our qualifications: openness to friendship. We’d like to call it “iron sharpening iron,” but it was probably more like flannel yelling at/cuddling with camo. We each cared about very different things, but that forced us all to function at a higher standard and sometimes come down to meet in the middle. That seems to be how God likes to orchestrate things; He can’t do much with you while you’re comfortable. It’s that pit in your stomach, the nervous barfing in the bathroom, the edge-of-your-seat bouncing that preps you for total transformation. As all of us students search for jobs this summer, some for four months and some forever, we start hesitantly updating our meagre resumes and doubtfully hypothesizing about holiday plans. It’s easy to wonder if God’s plan for your life becomes less powerful when you leave this place, but He’s only just getting started with you. Get excited about uncertainty!
1st year: Spent most days with high school friends instead of on campus. 2nd year: Spent most days on campus... playing videogames... instead of with university friends. 3rd year: Spent most days with university friends instead of getting to know my profs. 4th year: Spent most days getting to know profs instead of getting work experience. 5th year: Spent most days getting work experience instead of working on academics. 6th year: Spent most days working on academics...oh wait...nope, too late.
The best thing that happened to me was that “C,” because it reminded me that even grades are messy, and a clean life is either impossible or miserable or worse, dull.
I knew I would attend TWU before kindergarten, and yet it looked nothing like I imagined. When you control your life, it can only ever be what you can fathom; the moment I stopped, it became so much more. I hold only two plans: to move forward with an ancient friend and stay behind for a brand new one.
At the beginning of the year, I confessed that I had zero newspaper experience. I was a breakdancing 20- year-old; how was I supposed to lead a team of 15 writers and editors to produce a university publication? Yet through this experience, I’ve come to understand something: God uses the unqualified to accomplish His work. Moses was a murderer, Thomas doubted, Jonah ran from God, David was a shepherd, Elijah was moody, Abraham was old, and Lazarus was dead. When we are forced to accept the fact that we lack qualification, we will not confuse God’s glory with our own; it wasn’t my doing, but His.
Contrary to what our ego tells us, God doesn’t need us; there is absolutely nothing we can give Him as a gift or to barter with. God didn’t create us because He needs us to accomplish His work, He created us because He wanted to. God calls the unqualified because this love brings us to a deeper trust and reliance upon our relationship with Him, to help us grow into more of who He desires us to be.
As Editor-in-Chief of a newspaper, I found myself caring less and less about the paper, and more and more about the relationships and people within the paper. During this summer, the articles, editing, design etc. will slowly start to fade, but the relationships here will last a lifetime.
As a wise man once said, leaving undergrad after 4 years is like leaving a party at 11. Well, boys and girls, it looks like the slow dances have finished and the Skytrain is on its last run. I believe if I stay any longer the specially trained 5th-year-sniffing geese will chase me off the premise.
I came here sort of out of instinct. I never really gave it any thought other than, “Well, I live in Langley; Trinity is in Langley; I’m a Christian; Trinity is a Christian; I think this relationship will work out—a match made in heaven.”
It seems many people reach this stage in life and know less about themselves than when they start. The more we learn about other things, the less we seem to be able to understand about ourselves. I’ll admit, I don’t have it all figured out. I’ve got a cool piece of paper to stick on the wall, but barely a wall to stick it on.
I could panic, but instead I’ve decided to just treat the rest of my life as one big undergrad experience. If the world continues on the same trajectory, the work I will be doing in 10 years will involve skills and tasks not even invented yet. So, I think it’s a little premature to expect to stop learning now. By this point I’ve gotten pretty good at the idea of learning (whether it shows in numbers is another question), but if there’s one thing I can rely on in the coming years, it’s that I’ll always have my passion to know more. And that’s more than enough to give me peace.
Thank for the memories T-dub.