one year.

5:01 PM

Community Group outing to Vista Lights

One year ago I packed up what belongings I could cram into my Honda and started the journey to Columbia, SC. I would be lying if I said I had no expectations. I had some...that God quickly did not meet like I had hoped, but as I reflect on the past 365 days, the one thing I can say for certain is that God has been beside me every step of the way, even during those days of utter darkness when I questioned whether I made the right move, if my motives were pure, if He had a purpose for me here. I think the one thing that stands out about the past year is the community He has placed around me from day one. Those of you who’ve kept up with my blog may remember me talking about my first night in town when the Syferts through a “Welcome to Columbia” party for me. That night I was introduced to their Community Group. Today they are MY community group. Although some of them have moved away, the people that came to welcome me that night, along with others, have become my family. They were the ones who showed up on a Saturday morning in August and helped me and my Dad unload a U-Haul truck of everything I had left behind when I finally moved into my own place. Not too long ago, Luke and I were talking about the group. He made the comment, “You don’t just need them. They need you.” I am grateful for this need we have for one another.

Then there are my work girls, the ones who keep me going when customers are being trying, things are falling apart, and I’m exhausted beyond belief. They check in on me on my day off and are quick to call when I say I’m having a bad day. Even the Starbucks that God put me in has a purpose for me, although I still struggle with fulfilling that purpose on many occasions. 

And lastly, I’m finally back in school pursuing the degree that’s been in the back of my mind since I left Asbury 6 years ago, counseling. I’m utterly amazed at how God orchestrates our lives when we choose to trust Him. I read this quote today in Brennan Mannings, “Ruthless Trust.”

Our story is perhaps a paradigm for every trusting disciple. The way of trust is a movement into obscurity, into the undefined, into ambiguity, not into some predetermined, clearly delineated plan for the future. The next step discloses itself only out of a discernment of God acting in the desert of the present moment. The reality of naked trust is the life of a pilgrim who leaves what is nailed down, obvious, and secure, and walks into the unknown without any rational explanation to justify the decision or guarantee the future. Why? Because God has signaled the movement and offered it his presence and his promise.

I’ve declared 2013 as a year of risk, which looking back on 2012, moving to Columbia was quite a risk for me. But there’s still so much more that God is calling me to. In the meantime, I have to trust Him that when things don’t seem to go the way I planned or hoped, it doesn’t change His love, His promises, or His purpose for me.

Happy 2013, everyone!

Oh, and not to disappoint my adoring readers, I need to give a shout out to my new friend, Gord Downie! I’m sure you’ll end up in a blog post soon;-)

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