on clubs and community

What club does your eight-legged friend keep disappearing off to?

Today, I went to a meeting for CKI, a service club here on campus. I've decided that until I've gotten good enough at balancing academics and all the whatnots of college life to take on high-commitment things like work or internships, I should be helping the community around me. After four years of high school going "homg need 2 moar csf hours or else i will be inactivzzzz ohnoes" the thing I've wanted to do most here was willing, fulfilling community service. I checked out multiple service clubs at college so far, but most of them reminded me so much of high school clubs ("you need at least 8 hours to be an active member" & "you should join because we have open officer positions!") that I began to wonder if there was anything to youth community service beyond getting resume/college experience.

But CKI struck me as different and, plainly, awesome. Because the one thing they reminded me of most was a fellowship. A family. They even had small groups for you to make close friends! And you can tell that the members - or at least the long-term ones - are really passionate about what they do. They get excited for new members. They reach out to you and ask you to join this activity or that activity to get plugged into the club. They put not only their time, but their money into it. First activity of the meeting? Asking for donations from the club members (of course, not like GIMME YO MONEHS but more of contribute all your loose change, folks!). And I was like, HM. I like it here. I feel at home here. I feel like I'm amongst...brothers and sisters.

It was so warm.

The first conclusion I reach is that Christian values, like generosity, selflessness, and joy for new brothers and sisters, make beautiful and strong communities that stand out amongst communities based on selfish needs.

But if you look past this first observation, you find that...these people aren't Christians. I know because when a sexual joke came up in the middle of the meeting there was a lot of laughing. So this means that non-Christians can reach a certain level of fellowship and family, too. They too can acheive an environment you feel drawn to, not by popularity or pressure but by a loving community. And that makes me wonder.

And at that point, as I walked back to my dorm in the chilly evening air, I realized that it was scary. The very fact that I have to wonder how non-Christians can reach a status that Christians have means that to some extent I am becoming another one of those proud, Christian elitists who think that we exist on a higher plane of existence than others. I'm distancing myself from humanity.

And that's not what I want to do.

But somehow, it's happening. I'm starting to think I'm better. That my community is better than yours.

It isn't. Is it?

Who am I to think that?

Why did God create pride?

But. As I am pondering this frightening thought, I am still very happy tonight.

One, I found a cool service club. Especially one that puts a focus on meeting new people. So I will be able to do cool community service and meet new people.

Two, I've been put at a radical university. Here, only a small proportion of students think like I do and I can do with a lot of humbling and a lot of learning about new ideas, opinions, viewpoints, faiths, experiences, lives, stories, and things I would not ever be exposed to elsewhere.

Three, no matter what happens or who I'm becoming, it's for the best. Romans 8:28.

So. This will be my new "science project." I shall go serve the community and meet new people and find out why they're so passionate, and hopefully learn more about myself and the world.



what to do with the time given to us

You are a bad doctor if you don't have any patience.

Today, I went to a pre-medical society's meeting and heard a very inspirational presentation by the club's advisor, a distinguished doctor. He emphasized that an amazing GPA and steady hands do not make a doctor; rather, you must love people. You must enjoy interacting with people, make connections with strangers who become patients, and be able to bear the responsibility of your patients' lives.

I have been pretty down in the past week due to all the crazy pre-med academic competitiveness (I don't like competing because why can't we all win and go to smiley-butterfly-rainbow-land) so being reminded about what my dream really is all about was very inspiring. It got me thinking about why I want to be a doctor. Here is a short essay I wrote in response to today's events.

Why I Want to Become a Doctor

J. R. R. Tolkien, one of my favorite authors, once said, “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.”

I believe that we were put onto planet Earth for a specific reason. I look around every day and see evidence of this: people helping friends and strangers, sharing their thoughts and their feelings with each others, smiling themselves after cheering up a friend. I believe that we are put amongst a million other people because we are meant to interact with each other. When we call ourselves “the human race,” we are not pointing to each human individual running towards their own inconsequential goals. No, we speak of the race that all humans are running together, towards the same goal that brings joy to us all. Our job is not to look after ourselves, but to pick up comrades who have fallen, point out the way to strangers who may be lost, and hold hands with those beside us so that together, we will be stronger and faster.

In short, I want to become a doctor because I want to dedicate the precious time that has been given to me to those who need my help.

How, you may ask, can I be so arrogant as to presume that they need my help? Aren’t there thousands of other researchers and physicians and medical students who can help these people? Aren’t there other ways to help people? Why should you be the doctor?

I have thought about these things, and I have doubted. But the conclusion I come to is irrevocably this: I can and will become a doctor because I have been given the opportunity to become one and I choose to use it. I could have been born blind, deaf, or psychologically ill. If that had been the case, what I could contribute to the human race would be considerably different from what I can now. I could have experienced familial and financial difficulties that left me scarred or prevented me from acquiring the education I have now. In that case, my potential contribution would be different as well. I’m not presuming that my potential would be smaller – only that it would be different. But no – through the work of God, or destiny, or maybe just a series of coincidences, however you choose to look at it – I have been molded into someone who believes in the triune God, enjoys oil painting, loves mentoring my “little brothers and sisters,” has a passion for medicine, and whose dream is to be a part of Doctors without Borders.

These experiences give me power. I can choose to reach for whatever they bring into my reach. A degree at xxx, the connections I’ve made, and the valuable résumé experience I have puts millions of possibilities within my future. But I want to make my mark in the world through helping people who come to me. I know that becoming a doctor is the way I am meant to bring forth my opportunities, trials, failures and successes, and the cherished time that I’ve been given to the human race.

This is what I have decided to do with the time that is given to me.


the obligatory introductory post

So. Who am I? I am just another blogger. Actually, I'm a college student who is not taking English classes this semester and wishes not to lose her writing skill. I also want to keep track of the little things in my life, so that when I look back I won't see just the faded continuity of the past, but the bright, flittering details, too.

All you need to know about me as you read is
1. I like puns
2. I like Jesus

Oh, and why in the world is the blog called WINLEMMA?
1. I like puns, and it is a clever (shut up) expression of a dilemma where you win both ways.
2. I like Jesus, and when you have him you can't ever lose.

Ha, enjoy.