Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Shock

I had an appointment for today with my former consultant or the "accuser", because he had to sign a paper for me.
Somehow I felt the urge to head into an other building on campus I hadn't been in for a long time. I don't know why I wanted to get inside, but I obeyed.
I wish I could turn back time, back where I was in BI. Or even the time before.
It happened so many years ago... Though I hated university I had friends. Those friendships were mostly periodical. It wasn't easy to have more semesters together. We were happy when we met somehow later. Some of the friendships lasted, some didn't.

I think I was junior that year when I first met him. We didn't only have one class together, like usual, but at least one every day. Not for one semester, however the following ones weren't as intense as the first was. But we remained friends. We still called each other and wrote emails to each other. Around absolution we both put on the harder life: working and studying at the same time. Slowly the time of phone calls was over, emails came less frequent until they ceased for ever. Literally.  
Last fall, when I was at home alone, I tried to catch up with some of these friends. I wanted to know, they were doing well and to maintain our friendship if that was possible. But he never answered either the calls or the text / email messages. I felt so odd. I couldn't imagine why he ignored me.

To continue the story from today, I went into this building. Memories of classes, exams and lovely people came into my mind. Actually I wished I could have met any of them! I was so sentimental. But the floor was empty. No one came. And I am thankful for that.
On the bulletin board I saw a paper, an invitation to a conference which took place three months ago! My first thought was how crazy this was. Why isn't this board updated? It could have been because of me. For me to know the truth. The conference was given "in loving memory" of X.Y.
X.Y. - who can he be? Both names are ordinary names used quite often. Just during my studies I got to know three men wearing this name. But this is also my friend's name. No, it's just can't be. If it says "in loving memory" he has to be dead. But this is simply impossible! He is my age!
I was shocked. Tears gathered in my eyes.. What if?

I couldn't wait to get home. And I started to google. Since he had his own website, I found him easily. But it expired. Why didn't he update it?
I didn't need to browse much longer until I found the kind of evidence I needed. The past, his silence made suddenly sense. By the time I tried to contact him, he was already gone. He didn't ignore me. I was too late.

I wish I could meet him once more. I want to hug him and tell him how sorry I am, that I wasn't there for him, when he needed a friend. That I will never forget him...
If I will ever learn how it happened? I wonder...

My favorite picture of him (21/22 yrs). 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

State Examination - Yuck.

The time has come.
The exam was … well interesting. It wasn’t like an exam at all.
There were three professors in the committee, none of them had read my thesis or at least one of the criticisms. So they didn’t have a clue about the whole thing. The president didn’t even pay attention to me. Beside her I had an “accuser” and an “innocent”. My accuser was my former consultant, who didn’t like my ideas and told me to either change my topic or the consultant.
So in the first part of my exam he asked me questions I couldn’t answer. He just asked if I had done this research or done that, what the results were… And the whole time long all I was said: "no, I didn’t do that" and "no, I have other results". After a while he gave me some rest, and the “innocent” asked what I’d done. After some sentences, the president wanted to move on to part two.
I should have given a fifteen-minutes long lecture, but there was no time for that. So I began to tell (less, than about my thesis), but soon I was interrupted by their questions. After answering them, they let me go.
Some minutes later they asked me to come back – the decision had been made. I got an A for the thesis (from the two professors, who did the criticism), and a C for the exam, because - according to the president - I wasn’t able to defend my thesis! Huh? I never had the chance…
Whatever. In the end I got a B for my degree. Not a bad mark at all...  
To God alone be the glory!
Thanks for your prayers. 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Carrying Each Others' Burden

I am totally stressed out…
I am really afraid and I thought I couldn’t calm down at all.
But today in church everything has changed.
My pastor gave us a parable about the pillars in the building and the elders like pillars in the life of the congregation. He told the elders should help to carry our burdens, but we don't really realize this. It shouldn't be the way it is. He asked us, if there is any prayer requests in our hearts we would like to share with one of the elders, that's the time for it.
So some appointed elders went to those pillars (one to one) and you just could go there to pray with them.
It wasn't easy to go there and tell about my lack of faith, how weak I was and how little I felt under the weight of my anxieties and fears. 
I was crying the whole time long he was praying for me and still sobbing during communion right afterwards.

Prayers do have power. It helped a lot! That's what I told everyone after the service.
Then I went first to this elder and asked him how I could pray for him - he was so touched that at least one person thought of him, that he has burdens in his life too and it feels good, when you know someone is praying for you. After praying with and for him, I went to my pastor and thanked him for this innovative step he took in the life of this church and for the most important thing, that he let God lead him!