Saturday, July 10, 2010

Tell me your story-I promise to listen

I've been doing a lot of journaling in the last 5 weeks. I've filled up both my prayer journal and my daily journal. I want to remember everything that I've seen and experienced and heard and loved and hated and laughed at and cried over and been confused by and...lived. I don't want to forget. And I find myself thinking over and over,"Oh I wish this person was here, they would love that!" Or "they would think that was hilarious!" Or any number of things. It's helped me realize how much I love the people in my life. I want them with me all the time. I want to experience life with people who make my life.

Quite possibly my favorite thing about being here is the people and the stories of their lives. I find myself sitting and listening and soaking in every word that these people are sharing with me. They're fascinating. I'm desperate to remember, and I have scraps of paper with random words to remind me to write it down everywhere. They open up their hearts so easily to us. I started thinking about why that is because, as Americans, we tend to be more closed off until people "earn" to hear or we trust them or they've proven themselves...and I started thinking about why that might be. I decided that people here just assume you care. How wonderful is that? To live your life assuming everyone cares about it! Sometimes I think we're more closed off because we assume people don't care. And what's sad is that it's true a lot of times. But I've heard stories of how people have fallen in love and fought cancer and broken friendships and 5 year long courtships and stories of redemption and salvation and family problems and financial problems and school problems and missionary stories and the list goes on and on. And it fills my heart up. We need that. It's what life is made of. When you share your stories, you share your life and your heart. And suddenly you're connected. And it's so beautiful.

This past week was hard for me. Kaitlyn left, and it was hard. I had grown used to having someone there to share every experience and moment with, and we had grown really close. I didn't want her to leave. And to be perfectly honest, I was homesick. If she was leaving, I would have almost just rather gone with her. I was aching for familiarity. I was weak. But I realized something, that's ok. I'm not supposed to be strong. And God provided me with verse after verse of perseverance and encouragement that He is the one who provides the strength and the comfort. My job is to rely on Him for that and persevere. And oh my gosh, is He faithful to His promises?? I had a great week! God brought so many students into the YLSC that I got to share Christ with and play with and talk to and get to know. I'm here to pour into them, and I won't stop until I leave. And it's going to be hard to leave them. They already have a piece of my heart.

I have just over a week left. I can't wait to be home, but I don't want to leave. I'm ready for my life to not be one large paradox.

This is Erica, Eunice, and Lindsey. They're regulars at the center. They're sweet..and crazy! And yes, I know. I'm super tall here. I've been told that I need to get married soon bc I'm so tall haha. whatever that means!

And good ole Darleen. She's still as precious as ever!


Gentry said...

I love reading about how you are doing! Your journaling is such a good idea. You'll remember it forever! Praying for ya!

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