I’m going to be completely candid and say that last school year was especially difficult for me. In the beginning of that year I decided that because I was an upperclassman and I only had two years left of undergraduate, I would put all my effort into progressing in my art forms and feeling prepared for the real world. I got cast in a bigger role through the theatre department and I was taking a ton of dance classes. Nothing sounds too bad about that yet, right?
My schedule was packed with class at 8:30 in the morning until around 3 pm with work until 5 pm and then rehearsals for the play from 7-10 pm every night. My class schedule had me running from class to class, sometimes without time to eat a full lunch. My academics became my main focus to the point where that was the only thing I was thinking about. I wouldn’t take time to be in community and spend time with my closest friends and I’d practice or do something else related to my art forms on the weekends. Worst of all, I put God as my last priority. I went to church on Sundays and thought about Him every once in a while but I stopped praying and He became very distant to me.
What happens when you focus on one thing? It becomes your entire life. That can be good in some areas, like a relationship with Christ perhaps, but too much of anything outside of that ends up leaving me dissatisfied and upset. I ended that semester consistently being stressed out that because I wasn’t achieving certain academic standards in my majors and I felt like I wasn’t good enough. Since theatre and dance were my only focuses, that’s where I put all my self-worth. Because I didn’t reach out to God when I was struggling to find myself, I became so lost and felt worthless. Earthly things, even as important as academic studies, can never be your main focus. Eventually I got to a point where I felt like I had nothing to lose.
I was at my all time low and I had some incredible people remind me of what my real meaning in life is. I couldn’t find my value in academics anymore so I decided to find them in the Lord again. I cried and spoke prayers of hurt and sadness, and eventually prayers of healing and contentment. I started reading my bible more and seeing the truth in what God’s word says about me. 1 Peter 2:9 says that But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” It doesn’t matter what my worth is in the world. I could be the best actress/singer/dancer yet never be satisfied with where I am if God isn’t the top priority of my life and the center of my focus.
Going into senior year, I’ve still been transitioning over to making God my main focus. It’s really hard to be completely honest. There are moments where I’ve gotten down on my performance level in the arts and I have to snap myself out of it real quick. The more I seek God as my first priority, the more I’ve seen God bless me with my friendships in my majors, church, and campus. I’ve found more worth in who God wants me to be rather than what I feel like I should be in this world.
I wanted to share for anyone who is struggling/or has struggled with the same things as I have. I hope you find comfort in the fact that other people struggle with this daily and that there’s always a way for God to change you self-worth to a confident one. Thanks for listening to my story! Xo, Brynne