Wow. So where has the time gone? 6 weeks of training over in a flash. How do you sum up six weeks in a few paragraphs? Six weeks of being stretched and pushed. Six weeks filled with moments of laughter and joy as well as moments of sorrow and tears. Times of feeling the exhilaration of seeing God move and times of feeling so low and empty that nothing but the power of God could make anything happen. You can’t. You can’t just sum it all up in a few sentences.
I went to New York knowing it was the ending of a season and the starting of another. I went wanting to be stretched–wanting to be changed. Was I? I hope so. But I know that the real test of change comes when we live life in the ordinary. When we can walk through our day to day lives wherever we are with that same passion alive and burning in our hearts.
Being at home in the Shire again scares me. It tends toward suffocation…but I feel that these few weeks before I officially move away for good are extremely important. In New York I tasted something. Something so deep and so rich, and all at once I was part of an epic adventure–the most important mission ever. Declaring The Name. It was exciting and exhilarating. Sometimes it scared me to death, but it was something so much bigger than myself–and it was glorious. In the Shire things feel different. That’s just it, though, they feel different. But we aren’t called to operate on feelings, are we?
The goal is the same wherever you are. The adventure. The calling. While the needs may take on different pictures. In Queens there may be large amount of Koreans or Bengalis that need the Gospel, but what about those run-down apartments on the outskirts of Goshen filled with low-income white people? As I rode my bike down those back streets today, I realized what a pathetic job I have done here in the Shire. I thought it was enough, but there is so much more to do here. There are so many battles to fight here, and I’m convinced that here we have to fight extra hard to simply keep our focus and our vision alive. In the city, wherever you go or look, there are countless opportunities to reach out to people, but its harder in places like the Shire, and you have to be so much more intentional. But isn’t that the real test of loyalty? How committed am I? How in love am I? How willing to sacrifice the daily comforts and really give of myself and seek out opportunities? Oh, God, open my eyes!
*All photo credits go to my lovely friend Krista Roth!