"Three times I was shipwrecked . . . " (2 Corinthians 11:25). I read that one line from the First Reading today and my heart skipped a beat. Same, Paul, same, I thought.
Shipwrecked. Tossed and turned. Lost and feeling alone. I've been there, more than three times, in fact.
The most prominent "shipwreck" that comes to mind, though, is the one in which the wreckage—in time—turned to beauty beyond what I could have ever imagined.
I graduated from law school in 2017 with zero desire to practice law. I spent three years of my life and lots of borrowed money only to realize that the degree I once thought I needed, and truly treasured, wasn't for me at all. Shipwrecked. Because how do you explain to those around you that you did this one thing this one time and now you're not sure what you're going to do . . . at all. Shipwrecked.
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth . . . but store up treasures in heaven . . . for where your treasure is, there also will your heart be" (Matthew 6:19,21). Amidst the waves, the tossing, the uncertainty, the turning of my heart from all things law to . . . Him, I began to realize that the desire I truly felt to leave all things law behind was okay. Because the unrest was not for naught.
The waves and the tide would draw me nearer to His heart, towards His peace, and deeper into His way. I thought I had to prove to myself and to everyone around me that I could do something with my worldly treasure (my law degree). Yet in the midst of feeling shipwrecked, He has shown me that the wreckage drifts slowly away always. The waves cannot crash and turn and toss us about forever. The calm will always return.
He builds a new vessel. He turns my heart and my eyes away from all that I believe I have to do and pursue in this world and lifts my eyes toward the Son. There is no more darkness in this wreckage. The journey towards Him is my heart's ultimate treasure and His light guides this beautiful new way.
A short collection of prayers for peace can be found here.
Shalini Blubaugh is a Minnesota transplant living in Denver, Colorado with her sweet husband, Matt, their brand new gal pal, Callan, and quite large GSD pup, Sully. She is a health coach and loves pizza, because #balance. Shalini graduated from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, served with NET Ministries, and went on to attend Law School. She graduated with her J.D. and happily leaves all things Law behind! Some of her favorites include travel, re-connecting with old friends and making new ones, the ways in which God so beautifully brings all things full circle in His time, and a good, loud thunderstorm. Find out more about her here.