I am a part of CFC-Youth, a Catholic youth group whose motto is to “be and bring Christ wherever we go.” Last weekend, I went to an event called “Stake for the Nation.” I walked into the room tired and a little bit cranky so when I found out that it was going to be all about school, I almost wanted to leave, but my friends told me to stay.
One of the speakers, Joe Balmeo, really stood out to me. His talk was called “The Puzzle Project.” He led an activity where we were asked to draw our goals and aspirations on a sheet of paper. I decided to outline my dream career as a speech language pathologist, among other things. Then, we had to rip this paper into pieces. We were then asked to flip these pieces over and reassemble them. In other words, we had no clue what our picture would look like. When asked to flip it over, everyone’s puzzles were mangled. The speaker debriefed the activity, telling us that the puzzle represented our life. Sometimes, our dreams and plans won’t go exactly as we hope, but that’s because God has something else planned for you.
I think this event occurred at a really good time. It’s crunch time for everyone. As seniors, it’s twice as stressful because there is immense pressure to get the good grades to be accepted into the top schools so that we can end up with a high-paying job. This event shifted my perspective on education, just as the “On the Way to School” movie did. As the speaker put it, “Education is a gift from God to help you reach your goals and dreams.” Suddenly, I didn’t feel the pressure to do well in order to earn a high pay. I want to do well so that I don’t waste my privileges. I want to do well so that I don’t waste my blessings.