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Pay it Forward

Today started my spring break from school. Finally, I have one week to kick back, relax and get ahead on some of my non-school related work. I was really excited to have one week of no worries, but this afternoon I received some disappointing news informing me that I wasn't accepted into an education program I had applied to earlier this month. Immediately, I felt a ping in my stomach. Although this wasn't my #1 choice for my post-undergraduate plans, it was a program that I was starting to really look forward to potentially pursuing.

Rejection is always hard to swallow. You feel that you work extremely hard in every aspect of your life, so receiving news like this never feels good. However, I think in situations like this, it is so important to see the bigger picture and to understand that He is on your side. He has a plan that is greater than anything you can fathom at the moment. It's important to choose to be positive.

Right after hearing this news, I had to board a train to visit my brother in Pittsburgh. If you don't already now, I grew up and was raised in a small town in Pennsylvania, but my ambition to receive an education and twirl for a Division 1 University brought me to Syracuse, NY. So, during breaks, I normally return to PA to visit family that I don't have a chance to see throughout the school year. Anyways... I booked my first train ride this afternoon to visit my brother for the weekend (which is crazy in itself because the town I come from was basically the railroad capital of America at one point in time). I was really sad while boarding and wasn't looking forward to having 3 hours to just think about being upset... Until I found this tucked into the curtain by my window seat:

"Toward gas to work"

Once I saw this, I knew that someone left it there with the intention to brighten someone else's day. And it sure did the trick. I saw this as a sign to stay positive and I remembered some very meaningful bible verses that have helped me in the past. These words helped me realize why decisions are made that I don't quite understand:

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths" Proverbs 3:5-6

"'For I know the plans I have for you', declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" Jeremiah 29:11

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you" 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

I thank the Lord for his decision on this. I'm grateful for His wisdom and guidance and one day I know I will look back and understand why He chose this for me. I know He will continually look out for me in the upcoming months as I chase after my future endeavors.

I understand that whomever is reading this may not follow the Christian or Catholic faith, but I hope these words bring you peace when you're feeling disappointed or down. After seeing this simple act of kindness and noticing the instant impact it had on my mood, I want to pay it forward, and I challenge you to do one small thing this week to be kind and pay it forward as well.

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