How do I put to words the story of my summer? How do I describe everything in a way that people might get a little insight?
The blog I wrote right before I came here stated that I was ready, I was excited, and I wanted a break. Even though I was "ready"... I had no idea what God was about to do in my life. And, I definitely got a break. A break that was refreshing, reviving, refilling, renewing... and not to mention, fun.
It was fun
...going to Olive Garden with my front desk girls.
...hanging out with homeless people on the square.
...eating sushi for the first time.
...hiking to Pulpit Point (and missing it).
...going to a crazy church with a huge group.
...going to the Abq zoo.
...horseback riding through the mountains.
...going to an Iron Maiden (who?) concert.
...playing rock band at Aaron's.
...seeing the O'Keefe museum with Kelli.
...being in the variety show (against my will).
...eating Coldstone on my diabetic birthday.
...watching fireworks in Abq with sweet friends.
...dressing like a cowgirl for Western Night.
...seeing an amazing view of Glorieta/Pecos with Rod.
...going to the opera with Aaron.
...having staff Christmas in July.
...sucking at atomic bowling with the girls for Hummer's birthday.
...seeing Hillsong in concert with my faves.
...having a girls' night in Santa Fe (dancing in the plaza).
...watching the sunset over the valley/Santa Fe.
These precious memories are just a few. There's so many more little things... each day held something new. A new memory, a new joke.
This week was Collegiate Week. 1,800 college students who are crazy about Jesus were on campus. Despite their incessant need to walk in the middle of the road, seeing a huge community of believers was just encouraging. Last year at Collegiate Week, God got my attention. I came here a little lost, with a lot of hurt and frustration... thinking I could get myself back on track.
But, I can't. It took me awhile to fully realize that. This last year has been an adventure. God has taught me and stretched me so much, especially this summer. There's a lot of things He taught me and ways that I grew, but a few that stick out:
I feel like I found myself. My identity is in Him. I don't want or need to fit in with society, or what people think I should be. I don't need the approval of people, my aim should not be to please them. It's been a rough couple of years, in all honesty. And this summer, I found joy... I thought I knew it before - I didn't.
He's taught me a lot about love and people. Love is an action, not a feeling. We love because He loved us, we love because we are called to love. Being out here in the beautiful mountains, made me realize how beautiful our God is... His beauty is reflected into Creation and into us. Love people because they are His children and He made each of us beautiful and unique, each for a purpose. Being a part of this family of believers for three months, day in and day out, realizing how different we all are was at times annoying or frustrating, but God really opened my eyes seeing the beauty in it.
God has shown me how strong He is, how He fights every battle. God has never failed, He has never let me fall. There's an overwhelming peace knowing that not only am I not alone in my battles, but that He comes to my rescue.
I am not ready to leave Glorieta.
Maybe I'm just in denial of returning to reality.
Maybe I just hate the fact that some of these people I will never see again.
I love this place, what it's all about and what's happened here over the last three months.
This summer, I became so aware of God... so aware of Him working, so aware of what He was teaching, so aware of His presence. I don't want to lose that when I go home. I should've already been aware, I don't know why I had to come out here for that... maybe that's why I needed this break so bad, with so few distractions.
I know when I go home, there are things that will change. There are "old" parts of me that I don't want to come back. My hope for the whole summer staff and myself, is that we would remember what God has taught us this summer and what He's done in our lives and cling to that. Don't let the changes be temporary.
I saw thousands of lives surrendered to Christ.
I made hundreds of memories.
I have an amazing Glorieta family.
I serve an indescribably incredible God.
This has definitely been a million-dollar summer.