Ladies and Gentlemen, it is official. I only have one week left of classes. Then it’s homeward bound for a couple weeks before the great trek to the Holy Land. I am incredibly excited, and yet I don’t want it to end. I am certainly ready to part ways with all the assignments (only two left, which I am quite effectively avoiding by writing this instead) but I don’t want to part ways with the people. I am so excited to be going home and seeing everyone again, and yet I feel like I’ll be leaving half my family behind in Dubuque.
This semester has resulted in hardships, broken hearts, strained relationships, and many many tears. And yet it has also supplied uncountable hugs, laughs and guffaws, welcoming smiles, and a deep connection with so many wonderful people. It seems wrong to be parting ways when we’ve meshed so well in the short time we’ve had together. And I should clarify that, while the junior class is absolutely amazing, I am talking about more than just these classmates. I am talking about the families here, the faculty, the staff, the church communities, and those amazing random connections with strangers in the stores and around town.
This advent season, the emphasis on waiting is more alive in me than ever before. Waiting to finish classes, waiting to go back home, waiting to see friends and family back home, waiting to… Yet, amid all this waiting, my heart is constantly shifting back and forth between anticipation and hesitation. Going back to one family means parting ways with another. Finishing one semester means the next is approaching ever closer.
But there is one thing I am always eagerly waiting for. In this advent season, I am actively waiting to celebrate the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We should be constantly celebrating Jesus Christ and awaiting his return. In trying to attend to the chaos of emotions swirling through me in this last week of the semester, it is so great to have God in my life to center and stabilize the whole amazing, chaotic, beautiful mess of the world that I am living in.
When I think about God’s love for all, it makes this transition time easier to handle. I can find the strength to finish the semester through God’s love. I can celebrate the upcoming return to home knowing that God’s love still connects me to the wonderful people here, and has connected me to those back home while I have been away. God gives me the courage to continue on this path to ministry. Without God, I wouldn’t be here, I wouldn’t be able to handle it all, and I wouldn’t be me. I am a child of God. Thank God for our life, our salvation, our everything.
As always, God Bless