Sidenotes

Typing this morning inside my warm flat, as rain splatters outside my window. The weather has officially changed, and it’s now pretty much cold all the time. When it’s raining, it’s even worse. Savannah and I can’t figure out how to work our heat, so that’s also an issue…

Lately, I’ve been realizing how little time we have left. Our trip is halfway over, and our next three weeks are pretty much booked up, then it’s Thanksgiving, and then we’re home! Time is flying by. I can’t fathom what the adventures, experiences, and blessings the next few weeks will hold, and I can’t imagine how hard it will be to leave this amazing city, this amazing country. I love the good ‘ole GB. For now, I’m just trying to take in as much as I can. When we describe our life, our situation to strangers and witness their reaction, I realize how blessed I am. In Dublin, I was telling a fellow B&B-er about the “Three” weekend, and eyes just grew big, “You did all that in one weekend?!” Life is good. I can’t believe we leave for Paris the day after tomorrow!

I’m not homesick for the States, but I am homesick for my family. I’ve gotten so used to the British lifestyle that it will definitely be a hard adjustment to switch back to America. It’s such a strange experience to constantly be surrounded by the same group of people or strangers. British strangers. I found a way to get Hulu here (so thankful), and hearing American commercials is so weird! That sounds weird, but listening to American accents is not the norm for me now. Whenever I meet an American or hear their accents, I’m so shocked. It’s easy to spot Americans, though, because the English are so much quieter. Wherever our group goes, we’re usually the loudest people in a crowd.

One of the largest aspects of this trip, at least for me, is the way my faith has grown. I’ve probably said it before, but I’ll say it again–when there are so many unfamiliar things filling my life, it makes me lean on God to provide stability and strength. He is one of the few familiarities. This week I was able to attend BCC for the first time in two weeks, and it was so filling just to be in His presence. I love their worship, but sometimes it’s hard to focus on the music when I don’t know the songs; this week, God changed that. After following along with these new songs, I silently asked God to let them play at least one I knew, and immediately they began to play “Inside Out” and then ended worship with a song that reminds me of my youth minister, “Soul Sings.” It was a good night. It’s still pretty eye-opening to go to BCC, because there’s always something new to witness.

Prayer has also been a key part of this trip, one that I wouldn’t have expected. I rarely get alone time (if you know me well, you know I need time to myself to “recharge my batteries” as Mom would say), but being in communication with God “recharges” me. Comforts me. I’ve never had a time in my life when I’ve fully committed myself to praying for something or someone specific, but this semester I’ve made the commitment to praying for those who don’t know Christ yet, and the joy that comes from Him. BCC has had an influence on that decision, and several other people on our trip have been praying for the same thing. (Mr. Winegeart, your wife is in all of our prayers, prayers of healing and comfort!)

“Those who look to Him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed.” Psalm 34:5

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