This blog is simply the story about my little life
with my sweet family that the Lord has blessed me with
and the day in, day out things that we do.
It basically is my online diary/photo album of our life.
I'm glad you're here!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

College prayers.....

I want to tell you a little story. As you know, my youngest son, Hayden is going to graduate soon, actually, in two days! This has brought on many mixed emotions for me. On one hand I am so very proud of him and all of my boys for being such neat kids and growing into such wonderful men. They all have many accomplishments. The main thing is that they love God and they are responsible, hardworking, happy, productive citizens. Eric and I are done with our main job of parenting and we can sit back and enjoy our hard work. The other side is that I have been very sad that this phase of my life is over. I have enjoyed being a mother so much. I have enjoyed all of my boys and our fun family so very much. It's hard. But, on the other hand, I am also getting old and I'm tired. I know, that I know, that I know that I am done and it really is a good thing. All things must come to an end and I'm okay with that, I'm just going through an adjustment.

So today I'ld like to share with you what has been going on with Hayden over the past 7 months. First I want to say that we have enjoyed watching all of our boys participating in sports and all their other events. Football has been especially fun for Eric and I to watch. When Hayden had his last game of the season last fall, I was surprised at how sad I was that it was over. I blogged about it and you can read it here. This story is about our journey that started with the end of football.
Here is an excerpt (one of many) from my prayer journal. I decided to share these private thoughts with you because prayer has been such an important component to this story. Before I start though, I do want to let you know that I pray like this over all of my kids, especially when they have big decisions, issues and prayer requests in their life. I love and support all of my sons equally.

Hayden did exceptionally well in football and towards the end of the season he started talking about wanting to play football in college. At the end of the season when I was so sad, I wrote down the above prayer. I asked that if it's God's will that Hayden could play college football.
Hayden told us that he wanted to put together a video of all of his football highlights from the past season and send them to local colleges. As you can see from my prayer above that I was praying for God's will and I was also concerned about his GPA being a 3.0. I have heard that a lot of colleges require at least a 3.25 and many require a 3.5.
It just seems so right for him to play college football, but I am worried about him being so far way.
As you can read above, I felt overwhelmed and stressed by all of this. There was so much to do and it is all uncharted territory.
I worry about him getting hurt too. I also worry about how he can afford a small college since we do not have a college fund for him.
I prayed about this a lot!
I panicked and fretted a lot too. I had many emotions going on at once!
In January, Hayden finally got his highlight video done and he put it up on Youtube. I took a picture of the screen this week and you can see that there have over 500 views!
The step was for us to go to all of the local college websites and fill out football recruitment applications. I prayed for God's help with all of this.
We attached the link to his highlight video.
We were so excited! The very next day, the Willamette University coach called him!
We kept praying!
Then he got a text from Lewis and Clark college, which was exciting, but grades were an issue. Oh no!
Then on February 2nd, we got this text from one of the coaches at Pacific Univeristy:
"Hayden – Great to hear from you and sorry we haven’t been in contact before today. You sound exactly like the kind of guy we are looking for! I’ll be able to watch your film today and will get back to you a little later in the afternoon. Look forward to getting introduced,Coach Craft"
Hayden called coach Craft and talked for a bit. He felt really encouraged by him. Right away Hayden felt a connection with Coach Craft and Pacific. We later got this email:

 "Hayden- It was great to visit with you today, I'm fired up about your interest in Pacific University and our Football program. I want to make sure you have some links to navigate our University's website and our athletic web-page as well. I have also put a couple of links below that I encourage you to look at including our application. I look forward to visiting with you again soon. Please feel free to call or write back with any questions.Take Care& Go Boxers! Coach Craft"
All of this attention from these colleges has been very exciting, but the problem is the cost of tuition. Small colleges and private colleges normally do not offer full-ride scholarships for athletics. They are also very, very expensive compared to public colleges and community colleges. Meanwhile, I kept praying.
I was so torn. It's hard as a mother because you want your child to achieve their dreams, but you also have so many concerns, worries and fears. I honestly did not even know what to pray.
I prayed for it all and I prayed for God's will. I prayed for God's guidance, wisdom and direction.
Defeat. We got a rejection letter in the mail. Sad day. They said that students seeking admission to Willamette has increased 300% over the past four years. They have received over 8500 applications and the competition for placement is especially keen. He needed a higher GPA to get in. This frustrates me a bit because we know that Hayden is capable of at least a 3.5 GPA or higher, if he would have cracked down, but he didn't take his grades very serious. We told him all the time that it would matter for college and he still didn't crack down, but now he wishes he would have. We were so disappointed. The coach wanted him and it's not that far from our town, but his 3.0 GPA kept him from getting in.
I continued to pray. I wrote in my prayer journal to God that "A shut door is an answer, and I thank You for answering. I trust you."
I was so proud of Hayden through all of this because he just seemed to have such a peace about all of it. He kept saying that God was going to work it out.
I kept praying and asking and praying and asking God.
I don't even know what's right any more. All of our other sons lived at home until age 21 and it feels weird to have Hayden move out this summer at age 19. Oh God, please help us!!!
Hayden and I both fasted and prayed about this.
Eric was praying too. We were down to the last two schools, Lindfield and Pacific, and we were praying that they would accept him.
Both of the coaches from the two last schools really wanted him, but after the rejection from the admissions office at Willamette, we were really concerned. We had not officially applied at these schools yet, we were still waiting on word from the coaches.
This whole thing was stressing me out.
We went ahead and filled out the complete college applications and we prayed before we hit the "send" button. The reason we waited to actually apply at the colleges is that it cost $50.00 every time you apply at each school, so we wanted to be certain that the coach felt that Hayden would be on their team before we filled out the apps.
I wrote the above entry in my prayer journal. Then I blogged about it, read the story here. The problem that is really nagging me is that both Linfield and Pacific are private colleges and private schools and are very, very expensive. They are more than double the cost of public colleges and community colleges. I did not have a good feeling about my son going in to so much debt for his college education.
Oh how I would love for my son to have his dream, but we really need a miracle.
Still praying.
Praying, waiting and trusting.
This scripture comforted me. "Those who love Me and trust in My name will be rescued, protected and I will answer their prayers. I will be with them in trouble and honor them." Psalm 91: 14-15"
I couldn't believe it when our pastor had Hayden go to the front of the church and he talked with him about high school, track, getting prom king and looking at colleges to play football. He then had the whole church pray over him while he's making these decisions and he prayed for God's will in Hayden's life. I cried. I was so touched. I also felt an amazing peace after this.
I continued to pray. I have been praying about every detail including his roommate.
Phillipians 4:6-7 says "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
I thought, okay, I'm praying with a heart of thanksgiving and I'm presenting my requests to God, but what does petition mean? Websters says it's a formally drawn request soliciting some favor, right, mercy or other benefit; a request made for something desired, especially a respectful or humble request as to a superior or to one of those in authority; a supplication or prayer. So that's what I did. I wrote a petition and lifted it up to God as I prayed with a heart of thanksgiving and made my requests known to God.
I finally had peace. Come back tomorrow for the rest of the story.

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Phillipians 4:6-7

Hugs, Sharon

1 comment:

elizabeth said...

Sharon, I just love this post and can't wait to read the rest. I have prayed and journaled like this over our daughters and am encouraged to continue as our youngest is making a decision about the next phase in her life.

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