I am not going to lie to y'all, writing this post was one big ride on the struggle bus. I tried writing a post on Thanksgiving last month but I was just really tired and homesick and wasn't satisfied with anything that I wrote. Then all of a sudden there were 10 days left in the semester and there was so much to do. Then all of a sudden the semester was over, I was packing two giant suitcases because I don't know how to pack efficiently, and I was on a flight back to Texas. Now I've been home for a little over a week and it's Christmas Eve and I just really want to get this post out on the interwebs. So without further ado, here is the post I've been writing for the past month. Enjoy!
Part of me didn't really believe the people that told me the first year of missionary life would go by fast, and yet here I sit: halfway through this first year and wondering what the heck just happened. I find myself in a really weird position because so much happened this semester, and the Lord was so generous with me, and He did so much in my heart and in the lives of the students that I have encountered...I have more often than not struggled to find the words to properly articulate how this semester was, how I'm feeling about everything, and what being a missionary is really like (uh, do you have at least two hours of time for me to somewhat answer that question?).
This season of my life has, thus far, been full of joy, of struggle, of pain, of beauty, of discomfort, of love, of frustration, of unexpected blessings...I could go on. There were so many times that I was convinced that there was no way I could be pushed further, that I could stretch my heart wider, that I could love harder. This semester was marked by change, chaos at times, newness, and transition. I am still me, but nearly everything has changed. This has been such a transformative season of my life so far, and I have so much to be thankful for.
I have never been more sure that I am exactly where God wants me to be. I am so honored that the Lord chose me to be at the U and to be a witness of His love to the wonderful students there. I am humbled and grateful for the women He has specifically gifted me with, for their hearts and the trust that they have in me to walk with them on their faith journeys. I am thankful that God has infinite patience with me, even when I mess up and constantly fail Him. I am relieved that my mistakes can't stop the Lord from moving in power in my life and the lives of the people I am surrounded by daily. I am overjoyed to be on a team of incredible disciples of Christ who constantly encourage me and challenge me to be a better human, sister, and missionary. I am thankful for the countless opportunities I have every day to share the love of Christ with college students, and I am thankful that God has mercy on me when I miss most of them.
I am thankful that the Lord has completely taken me out of my comfort zone this semester. I am thankful for the times where I felt completely alone, for it is in those times that I learned how to depend on God - even and especially when it is not easy. I am thankful that no one else plays guitar on my team, because I have had to step up many times, I haven't felt ready for any of them, and all of it is making me a better guitar player and worship leader.
At the end of each day, I am just so gosh darn thankful to be a missionary working for SPO, and I am thankful that the Lord chose this path as the one that would make me the holiest. I am so undeserving but so grateful. I am happy to have this time off to be with my family in the great state of Texas (and to eat all the foods that I missed), but I cannot wait to get back on campus next semester. All glory to Jesus Christ, now and forever, amen!
To Jesus through Mary,
My name is Rebecca. This blog is a documentation of my life as a missionary with Saint Paul's Outreach - in Minnesota, Florida, and everywhere in-between. Thanks for stopping by!