Seeing One Direction on the floor with my high school best friend, Katheryn, was one of the most fun nights I’ve ever had. Man, the good ole days!
My first day in London! I was jet-lagged from not sleeping on the plane, but that was one of the happiest days of my life. Going to London was a dream come true and finally experiencing the town was surreal.
First day of senior trip was spent running around Epcot with my friends. We went crazy and spent every free second soaking it up while other classmates spent time at the hotel. It was a BLAST.
Winning cheerleading state for the first time as a senior and the squad captain was one of the hardest journeys and most rewarding of my life. Holding this trophy that was a culmination of four long years of work meant more to me than any high school cheerleader ever.
Bid day! Of course! One of the happiest days of my life was running home to Pi Beta Phi. I was so sick with nerves until the bids came out at 2 p.m., but when I got my bid I was so so so happy. This day is even better in hindsight after spending four years as a collegiate member and a year on Exec. I now know how amazing this organization is.
This was the day Annie and I went to Paris for the first time. We got in to Paris, dropped our bags, took a cab to the Louvre, ran in and saw the Mona Lisa (story here), ran to the Eiffel Tower and got these crepes and watched the Eiffel Tower sparkle. We did Paris in about 2 hours and it was magic.
In the thick of recruitment I had one of the best days of my life–several best days. A lot of hard work, more than anyone will ever know, came to fruition in these days. This particular night was overflowing with Pi Phi love from the sophomore class that put together this gift basket. I told you this organization and women are great!!!
This one is going to count for two … This is the day I got my first real job. I couldn’t believe it happened. Now I’m SO thankful for that job because it brought me great friends, experiences and the confidence to go for other things.
This isn’t the best picture, but it’s the day I rented my first apartment–with the help of Mom and Dad! I literally got the job and got the apartment the next day. It was a whirlwind and so fun. I felt like an adult for the first time.
Have you ever thought about the best days of your life? All the pictures above are photos taken on days that I consider some of the best of my life. They are varied experiences and from different times of my life in the last few years. But every time I look at them, my heart bursts.
All of these days in my life have the same thing in common: God’s sovereignty. I look back at these photos and smile because each moment captured is a snapshot of the pinnacle of God’s plan for my life coming together despite my best efforts to prevent it.
I worked so hard to win a cheerleading state championship and dedicated years of my life to the gym (obviously plus tons of teammates who helped make it possible!). I spent hours perfecting my plan as the Recruitment Chair and VP of Membership for Pi Phi and the chapter executed it and in return we posted the best numbers we’d seen in years. I finally got a job I had been praying for for months. The experience of things going right in my life resulted in the best, dreamiest, happiest, most unbelievable days of my life.
All these things happened to ME, but not because OF me. The best days of my life were not because of anything I did. In fact, hundreds of people were part of these days and the result is just as much theirs as it is mine. The only thing I am responsible for is just going along, sometimes reluctantly and angrily, with God’s plan (@Drake). These passions and traits I have are not mine. I don’t even know why I was born obsessed with recruitment or cheerleading. These passions are a blessing from God and a vehicle for Him to work through.
The funny thing is that many of these experiences didn’t happen in the ways I hoped or prayed for. I often prayed for other things, but that’s the reason God is God and I am not.
I didn’t want to be VPM when I first applied for Exec. I failed three times before winning a state title, and every year it was more upsetting. I wanted a job right out of college rather than a few months like what really happened. I wanted to have a magical Parisan vacation where I had plenty of time to plan it all out (Lol, Annie you get it).
I’m now a firm believer that the unexpected is underrated. The unexpected is where God does His best work. It’s where He flexes His God-sized muscles and blows our minds by pulling strings and opening doors and moving mountains that we once thought were immovable. He does the exact opposite of what we pray for–thank goodness for unanswered prayers. In my experience, His “no” is followed by the best days ever.
When you look at these pictures, know that they are monuments in my life. God’s hand is all in them. They were the end of a wonderfully trying and challenging journey, or they were the beginning of a new journey that I’m currently on. Or they were just plain FUN. Regardless, thinking back on these moments makes me feel so important because I feel how loved I am by the God of the universe.
These moments wouldn’t be possible without people like my parents, my sorority sisters and friends, fellow cheerleaders and even the University of Oklahoma. They definitely wouldn’t be possible without God. Thank you to ALL of you for playing a part in the best days of my life … the days I will remember when I am old and gray ready to go home to Jesus … the days that shape many other days.
So when I am feeling discouraged or like my prayers are falling on deaf ears, I look back at these photos and remember the feeling of the best days of my life. I remember the relief, excitement and amazement because God totally took me by surprise at how great this life is and can be. Slowly but surely I am comforted by my Savior to trust Him, because the best is still yet to come.
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Holly Hoehner has her bachelor’s degree in public relations from the University of Oklahoma. She considers herself more of a Russell Westbrook than a Kevin Durant and enjoys learning about and participating in the digital age, blogging about anything that comes to her mind and creating witty Instagram captions. Holly was raised a die-hard Sooner fan in Edmond, OK.