I'm absolutely delighted to announce that Lesley-Anne has been successful in her DSA application. For privacy reasons, I will not disclose the names of the two schools she applied to, they shall only be known as School X and School Y. This post is for me to share how this little journey of just one-and-a-half months had been a test of faith of sorts.
As a family, we had obviously been praying very hard for Lesley-Anne to be successful in her DSA application. She'd applied for two schools, and Kenneth and Lesley-Anne had both prayed for God to give them a clear signal, ie give her only one acceptance so she would know which was the school for her. But unbeknownst to them, I’d been praying for God to give her BOTH schools. Why? In my own twisted way, I felt that asking God to close all options except the right one was a cop-out. Faith to me is about making a conscious decision to follow God's will and I felt that this DSA decision, which would impact on Lesley-Anne's next four to six years, was a milestone - it should testify to God's love somehow. Following God because you don't have a choice is hardly an act of faith. I know, I know, geh kiang right! Must make an easy thing difficult.
So anyway, we went through the whole process of DSA from application to tests to interviews. Initially, all three of us had School X as the school of choice, School Y was the back-up. But within that short timeframe, things slowly changed. It was a combination of things - the admissions process, the school environment, the vibes we got talking to the students of both schools, the fit with Lesley-Anne's personality, the teachers, anecdotal stories we had heard about both schools, even the types of students who wanted to go to each school. Strangely enough, everything seemed to be in favour of School Y.
Kenneth and Lesley-Anne became more and more drawn to School Y and started discussing the possibility of choosing it over School X. But I stubbornly clung on to the idea of School X because in the world's eyes, it was the sensible choice. Even though certain aspects of School X were making me feel apprehensive and uneasy. (Note to those who know or think they know which is School X, I'm not saying it's a bad school, I'm saying that God was trying to point us to the right school for Lesley-Anne, just as we'd prayed).
Finally, epiphany struck when I was sitting on a bench at School Y as Lesley-Anne's DSA interview was underway. I was saying a prayer for her interview to go well and suddenly felt like a big fat hypocrite because while I kept spouting that we'd leave it to God, I still kept worrying about it, trying to second guess God's decision. I then came to this realisation: it’s not that I didn’t trust God, it’s that I was resisting Him. The honest truth was that I’d come to know that God intends for Lesley-Anne to go to School Y but I didn’t want it to be, so I closed my ears. All the time that I was praying for a school where Lesley-Anne could be happy, in my heart I really wanted her to be happy at School X.
The message I received loud and clear sitting on that bench that day was to let go. Really let go. And it was only at that point that I was finally ready to accept God's lead and say, yes, if Lesley-Anne eventually gets accepted into both schools, I am able to let her reject School X without any regret. I actually sent an sms to Lilian right there and then, sharing my thoughts. She was most encouraging as always and told me how great it was to have such a clear idea of God's plan. She's right of course. I thought, how stupid I was to even think of resisting the good gift that God has planned for my child!
So when Lesley-Anne was accepted into School Y, we were jubilant, but not entirely surprised. As a final piece of confirmation, one of the disadvantages of School Y versus School X is distance. Then a couple of weeks ago, Kenneth went jogging in our estate and lo and behold, he caught sight of a student from School Y. We've lived in this estate for over 12 years and never seen that uniform here. He stopped her and asked how she got home. Turns out, there's a public transport route that we didn't know about from School Y, that would take significantly less time than we thought. When God blesses, He doesn't sprinkle, He showers :)
As it turned out, God did answer my prayer - He gave Lesley-Anne both schools. I'm guessing it's because He knows He can now trust me to make the right choice. The nay sayers out there will probably think we made a foolish decision. It really doesn't matter. What matters is that I know deep inside that Lesley-Anne will be happy at School Y and it will play a big role in shaping her very important teenage years. I can't ask for more than that.
Note: Please understand that I wish to keep both schools anonymous so I request that you refrain from speculating openly in the comments. Thanks!