From a young age, I had always been an over achiever, a relentless go-getter. I had many interests and I pursued each of them with all I had. Once I achieved one thing, I would move on to the next. It was all I knew how to do, and I was good at it.
As I got older, I had learnt so much from all the experiences that my never-say-no attitude only thrived in university. With so many opportunities and a society that encouraged jumping at them, it didn’t take me long to get involved. I went from position to position, climbing up that ladder, relentlessly chasing something but not knowing what.

Somewhere along the way I had begun to feel empty and in 2015, I hit rock bottom. I had just finished up my year as a UQ club president. For so long I had pushed and pushed to grow and build the club. By the end of the year, the club had won two awards and I was awarded the highest individual one. But instead of feeling elated, I felt empty. I looked around and realized that all that I had done, not just in that year but up until that point, didn’t really matter.

In true existential crisis manner, I spiraled into depression. I pretended to smile but, on the inside, I was exhausted trying to be stronger than I felt. I felt disenchanted and lost. Being depressed was like being colour blind and being constantly told how colourful the world is. I struggled to hold on to God’s promises or to feel hopeful the way that everybody else in church seemed to do so easily.

I felt so distant from God and I remember the day I called my mentor and told her that I no longer could call myself Christian. I didn’t know if I believed in God because I no longer heard Him and I was tired of trying.

One day, I was walking across the field to university, when I fell and twisted my ankle. As I hobbled to my feet, God spoke to me. He said, “while you were relentlessly pursuing everything, I was relentlessly pursuing you. And even though you give up, I won’t.”

In the middle of the field, I sobbed. I realized that while I tried to build up things of the world, like sandcastles, none of them would survive the waves of time. It literally took God twisting one of my ankles to get me to stop and think. I learnt that the peace and purpose I longed for was not in just striving for the sake of striving, but in striving with God for God. That day, I understood what it was like to be pursued obstinately, wholeheartedly and unceasingly, even though I never once deserved it. That day, I discovered the full magnitude of God’s relentless love for us.

Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you. Isaiah 54:10

Alynna Wong
Bachelor of Laws/ Journalism
UQ1

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