Confession: I am really excited for the completion of the reconstruction of Graves Hall. It is an older building on Hope College's campus and has been under construction for about a year now. I had one terrible class in the dull building during my freshman year. However, I have many great memories of Graves Hall as well. It provides many great doorways to hide in while playing Assassins with the Cross Country team. I have also sat on the benches outside many times, including one time with Tim which ended a great Sunday together.
Why I am most thankful for Graves, however, goes back to the Fall of my freshman year. The first semester of my freshman year was a very rough time in my life. One day, after my freshman year seminar, a girl in my class, Grace, if I remember correctly, asked if she could pray with me. I, of course said yes, really needing that prayer that day. I can't quite remember how exactly the rest of the events played out. We were standing in between the library and the science center, almost crossing the road when she asked. I can't remember if we prayed there and then went into Graves together or if I went by myself or-- Actually, what I think happened was she asked if we could go into Graves to pray. I said sure and she led me to the basement of Graves where there was a room, about half the size of a classroom that had a small alter in the front and little pews. We prayed there in front of the alter and then I said I was going to sit for awhile. She said alright and left. I sat for quite a while. I looked around and found a Bible and then some song books. I flipped through them. I started to look at more things on this bookshelf and then notebooks on a table. All these notebooks were filled with prayers. Some were very recent while some of the notebooks were much older. They weren't printed prayers, but rather people's, most likely students' personal prayers. I read many of them and then added my own, praying it up and writing it down.
In that prayer I included the- then secret, still a secret to some- thing that was weighing me down. I needed relief. I need more air.
Obviously writing my prayer didn't instantly cure what was troubling my heart, but it was a step in the right direction. I haven't returned to that room often since, but knowing it is there has been a sense of comfort to me ever since. I hope they keep that room after their refurnishing of Graves Hall, but I suppose I will find out in Spring 2010. If not, perhaps I will just have to restart another room like it elsewhere...
After all, it is good to know you are not alone. Not only is there God, but there are others whom He has put here to comfort to you.
Thank you to them. Thank you to Him. And thank you to Grace for reminding me of what was there all along.