Rejoicing in Suffering: A Personal Testimony of God’s Faithfulness
This past summer was one of the toughest and most confusing times of my life, but through everything that I went through the words of James 1:2-4 and Romans 5:3-5 kept running around in my head. James 1:2, which got me through the summer, says “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds.” Well, this summer, for me, was a collection of trials of various kinds.
My plan, for the past four years of my life, has been to go to West Point after high school. So, after God granted me acceptance this past spring, I was overjoyed with anticipation for the beginning of West Point’s basic training for new cadets, which began July 2. Early that morning my family got up and drove me to West Point, which is about an hour away from where I live in Manhattan. Upon arriving, I was greeted with a frenzy of lines and equipment checkpoints, leading up to a medical station. At the medical station, I was given a questionnaire which asked me if I had ever sleepwalked. I answered yes.
After handing in the questionnaire, I was taken to meet with a psychiatrist and held in a room for over three hours. My admissions officer eventually came in and told me that I would not be allowed to enter basic training with the rest of the class of 2022. He gave me a Letter Of Assurance and told me that I would be allowed to come back next year with the class of 2023 as long as another sleepwalking incident did not occur. Immediately, I called my parents, who were still on campus, and told them the news. Heartbroken, they started frantically calling my friends from camp, the ones who had told me about my sleepwalking. All of my friends said that they can’t remember me sleepwalking and that they never told me any such thing. That’s when I had a sudden realization.
When my friends had given me the impression that I had sleepwalked, they were actually just telling me about cramps that I had in the middle of the night that required me to walk around the room. I had separated two events that were clearly connected and suffered as a result. As soon as I could, I found my admissions officer and told him what had really happened; how I never actually sleep walked and how it was all a big misunderstanding. It did not work out and I was still sent home from West Point with the assurance that I would be able to come back next year if I wanted to.
My family was heartbroken and so were many of their friends, but God always has a plan in store. The plan that He had for me has been better than I could have imagined. Currently, I am a freshman at Wheaton College, in the best Christian environment, with the best friends, that I have ever been in. God’s plan for me is still unclear, and I do not know where I will end up, but perseverance and steadfastness that I know will come from this trial are still on their way. God has blessed me with what has happened beyond what I can imagine, and I have confidence that whatever his plan is for me will be perfect.