Called Me Higher

1401633_659734434068663_1270653558_oI envy those who experienced a picture perfect freshman year of college. For me, my first year left me feeling hallow, unknown, and weary of being the college Kate. I found an excuse to drive home whenever possible. There I was known. I was fully accepted. I could be me. Taylor, although a great school, was not home. It was not where I felt safest, where I could be me. It was simply the place where I lived during the week and occasionally on the weekend.

On one of my drives back to Taylor after a weekend at home, I found myself in tears. This was not uncommon, but the hopelessness in my heart was new. I was done. I was tired of doing something hard. I just wanted something easy.

And then a song came on my iPod, one that I skipped before because I didn’t know the words. At this particular moment, though, I didn’t have the energy to drive and find a song that I wanted to listen to. So it played, and it made the tears come harder.

The song was “Called Me Higher,” by All Sons and Daughters. Its powerful lyrics rocked my world that day on County Road 46 in New Paris, Indiana.

And I could hold on
I could hold on to who I am and never let You
Change me from the inside
And I could be safe
I could be safe here in Your arms and never leave home
Never let these walls down

But You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You lead me Lord
Where You lead me
Where You lead me Lord

Before college, I wanted to do great and hard things for God. I prayed tough prayers. I asked him to send the challenges my way. I was ready.

In reality, I wasn’t. I wasn’t ready for the change, for the uncomfortable situations, for the new friendships that I needed to form. I wanted nothing more than to stay at home where I was comfortable.

Thankfully, I didn’t drop out of school and move back home. That would have been a huge mistake. Last night I was reminded of this at an All Sons and Daughters Concert. As they played “Called me Higher,” I was reminded of God’s incredible faithfulness. Two years ago I could not have imagined the place I am now. I could not have imagined the person I am now. I could not have imagined all of the blessings God was going to bring. I am surrounded by friends, by mentors, by a supportive community. I still find it hard to leave home, but home has become interchangeable between the home I have in Nappanee and the home I have in Upland.

And now as college winds down, I’m holding onto this story. The story of a nineteen year old girl crying as she drove back to school. The story of that song, of the days, the weeks, the months that followed. The story that drips with hope, hardships, and home. The story that brought friends who feel more like brothers and sisters. I know that the next chapter of this story will include a new level of uncomfortable. It’s unknown and it’s risky. It makes my heart beat faster. It tends to keep me up at night.

It’s not what I would choose. But even still:

And I could be safe
I could be safe here in Your arms and never leave home
Never let these walls down

But you have called me higher.

God has planned a life for me greater than I could ever imagine. Even when I cannot see His plan, I will remember that He has called me higher.

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