I have one more graduate school interview.  So far this month, I’ve visited three schools and heard back from none.  I know this process takes awhile, but the waiting is killing me.  As I type this, scenes of my past interviews are running through my head and I can’t seem to decide whether I want to jump out of my seat and walk around impatiently or sit here in quiet anguish as I accept the fact that there is nothing else I can do to enhance my eligibility.  I started this month with too much confidence only to progressively lose my cool as I confront the very real possibility that I may not be accepted anywhere.  Maybe I should’ve applied to more schools.

Maybe I’m not good enough to do science.

The thought that I might have to stay at my lab for another year as I reapply for the next cycle mortifies me.  More so because of wounded pride.  I cannot imagine how I would write to my professors again to request another set of recommendation letters.  I cannot even bear to imagine that I would be the only one of my friends still trying to get into graduate school while everyone else is on their way to a medical degree.  What bothers me most is the fact that all the reasons I just listed are so superficial.  Who cares about what other people think when this is MY career? This is when I know I have lost sight of what matters most.

It’s funny how some people say that I’m overly modest, because pride is something that I struggle with a lot, especially when it comes to science.  I think that’s probably true for a lot of people who have ever poured heart and soul into something they really love.  You become so attached to that one thing that it’s hard to face people and circumstances who challenge your sense of entitlement.  As much as it pains me, I’m grateful that God continuously breaks me down in this area so that I can clearly see what has been His all along.

It’s not that I don’t think I’ve worked hard for the things I’ve achieved; but I just don’t think I would’ve gotten this far without His grace.  I think I’m qualified for the work that I do because He has equipped me with the necessary skills and opened the doors to opportunities that led me here.  Even though a lot of other lab techs could probably replace me, I am at a place that best fits my skills and where I have the most to gain from.  As uncertain as the future can be, I think right now I am exactly where I am supposed to be.  Exactly where He wants me to be.

Why I want to do science shouldn’t be about prestige or the pursuit of validation.  And maybe it’s not even because science leads to innovations in medicine and health.  But above everything else, Science—either as a way to marvel the natural world or as a humbling career that demands perseverance—points me to the grace that is in Christ, my Savior.

“Now the poor, stand and confess that my portion is Him, and I’m more than blessed.”

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