Since returning to the good ol’ USA, we have been hopping from family to family. In some ways, since this will be the first time Scott and I settle anywhere in the states, we are just learning about how to live on our own here (together). In August, we plan to move to Waco, Texas, where I will start graduate school at Baylor University and Scott will work. We feel like the Lord opened this door, but there are lots of unknowns, so we are taking it one step at a time and trusting for God’s faithful provision.
Canton. We started our time in Ohio with Scott’s parents. We were faced with the first reality of growing up: getting our stuff out of our parents’ homes. Sorting through old stuff and packing up was even more necessary because Scott’s parents are moving right now too. This week they moved into their new home!
Lakeside. We joined Scott’s parents for the East Ohio United Methodist Annual Conference in Lakeside, Ohio. Though we did not go to the sessions, we enjoyed our time walking around the penninsula beside Lake Erie, playing miniature golf and shuffle board, swimming, and eating lots of good ice cream! It was a fantastic time to relax with Scott’s family and connect with many of their family friends.
Chicago. Thinking we were closer than we were, we made the drive on to Chicago to visit my sister, Candace, and her family for a couple days. We had a blast with our niece and nephew! And, it was Scott’s first time to see the bean in downntown!
Columbus. One of Scott’s good friends from high school days got married over the weekend. Scott was in the wedding–which was beautiful! We were also able to stay with Scott’s sister and brother-in-law (Megan and Bob) for a couple of nights while we were in town. They too were packing to move this week so we got to help with a few boxes.
Wilmore. In an effort to break up an even longer drive and fulfill a heart-desire to see close friends, we stopped for a day in Wilmore, Kentucky. We were reminded of what great friends we have and how blessed we are to know them. Friends like these are irreplaceable, but Jesus-seeking friends are essential. Pray that we can make solid friends in Texas.
Pine Bluff. After nearly three weeks of travel in the states, we made it to my parent’s home in Arkansas where we will stay for about three weeks–the longest time we have been in one place since Ireland. We were eager to get to Pine Bluff, so we left at 4:30 in the morning to catch a day and a half with them before they traveled to China to visit my sister and her husband, Mallary and Chip. Scott and I are holding down the fort for my parents while they’re gone including: caring for my grandparents, taking care of the dogs (and new puppy), working in the yard, organizing and packing, refinishing furniture, and countless other little things.
It has been refreshing and fun to be with family. Yet our minds are still processing what God has taught us throughout this year–which is more than we can express at this point. We are dealing with some expected culture shock and some unexpected shock of learning how to live again in the states.
But we are hopeful, “since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are —yet he did not sin.Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need” (Hebrews 4:14-16).