Sometimes in our busy lives, we feel the need carry all the weight of our burdens and struggles on our own shoulders. While this is a common theme among many (especially college students) there is a much easier and simpler way to go about our daily lives-by trusting in God. Most Christians when asked if they trust God would probably agree that they do trust God, however, a far better and more difficult question to answer could be, “How much trust do you place in God?”. I think the answers to this question could vary quite a bit but would ultimately point to the fact that many of us have not been fully trusting the Lord to the degree that we should be. The lack of trust can often lead to worry and anxiety. I don’t mean to pretend for a second that I always place all my trust in God. I am only recently discovering what a great gift it is for us to be able to trust in such a reliable God.
Growing up, I didn’t have much to worry about. I mean, I sure thought I did at the time, but looking back I had great parents, siblings, and friends. I had no bills to pay. I didn’t have a real job (just a summer job and odd jobs I would pickup between sports seasons). At the time, I believed I placed all my trust in God, but since things in my early life were so smooth, this trust was never really tested. I never had anxiety problems growing up, but I also never had to over come any kind of major hardships. But things got increasingly difficult after high school.
When I decided I wanted to attend to Western, I already knew I couldn’t afford it. Being from Missouri, the out-of-state tuition was pricey, and I needed to achieve in state tuition and/or get a job with great pay in order to pay for just one course, which was over $3,000. I moved to Tennessee in the summer of 2019 and applied to work at several places but didn’t receive any calls back. When I made my first tuition payment of my college career, I had less than $20 dollars in my bank account. I prayed about my financial situation every day, but worried more and more about it as time passed. Classes were something else I struggled with at the beginning of college; I’ve always made good grades, but rarely had to study in high school. The transition to college format took a lot more effort than I thought. Nevertheless, I kept going. As time passed, I questioned my decision to even enroll in WKU; The original reason I decided to apply was for their geography/geology program(s) and eventually wanted to have a career dealing with caves and karst. However, the longer I attended, the further in debt I became, and my dream seemed pretty unrealistic. On top of everything, my friends, family, and girlfriend (who is now my fiancé) were all back home and I worried I would grow apart from them since I lived seven hours away. I prayed and did everything in my ability to solve these problems, but decided I had to ultimately place more trust than I ever had in God for I am merely human. Things didn’t change right away, but I noticed a definite calm sensation come over my body.
Long story short I was employed by UPS and promoted to supervisor after about a year. I have been able to pay all my tuition thus far and have been able to achieve goods grades as well. As of this semester, I have been granted residency status for tuition purposes, which has already saved thousands of dollars. New problems and distractions present themselves constantly, but I have learned (and I’m still learning) to place all my trust int the Lord. As of December, I started a paid internship working in and around Mammoth Cave but working both jobs has made my free time disappear. With classes added on top of that, there are some days where I feel a little overwhelmed. When I do, I simply take a deep breathe and know that God is in control. We are human and can only do so much, so place every single bit of hope and trust in the Lord.
A few verses that helped me along are:
Proverbs 3:5-7 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”
Proverbs 16:3 “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.”
Psalm 56:3-4 “When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me?”
Trayson Lawler, WKU class of 2022, is from Strafford, Missouri, and is majoring in geography/environmental science. He’s a caver, and if you have any caves you want surveyed, call him at 417-350-5561.