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The choice

My senior year of college, I went to a guidance counselor at my school, to help me sort out what I was going to do next.

As I mentioned in the last post, I had the opportunity to go on a short-term  missions trip to Mexico with my church (I think it was 7-10 days long).  Or I could go to British Columbia for seven weeks.

I had never been on any type of missions trip and wasn’t sure what the best option would be for me.  So I told the counselor  about my two options, hoping he could help me figure out which choice to make.

And he responded with something I had never heard before (though I have heard it since).

He said it really didn’t matter which option I chose.  God would use either one.  For some reason I had a very hard time believing that.

I just could  not wrap my mind around the fact that God didn’t have one plan for my life, that I should follow to a “T.”

It’s been years since the counselor told me what he did and now I can see where he was coming from.   When I was young, I think I thought that if I was supposed to get married, there was only one person out there that was the right fit for me.  My soul mate.  But then I started hearing that perhaps there were a handful of guys that might make a good mate for me, and basically it was up to me to choose.  Again, that kind of thinking rocked my world at the time.  But it really doesn’t phase me anymore.

Anyways, as I was trying to decide between my two missions options, I was talking to a friend (who has since become a missionary) and he said that if I went to Mexico for one week, it wouldn’t be long enough to really make an impact on my life.  Sure, I’d experience new things and might be impacted a bit, but it wouldn’t take too long for me to get back to normal life.  So, he encouraged me to go for the longer trip.  And that’s what I did.

I initially signed up to spend seven weeks of my summer in British Columbia and knew that I had the opportunity to stay on for the school year too, if I wanted.  Before I left home, I was certain that seven weeks would be long enough for me.  Except I was wrong.

More on that in the next post.

Welcome!

Welcome to my blog!  I actually have a private blog that I’ve been  using for the past couple of years that only family and close friends can see.  But there have been several occasions where I’ve written a post and found myself thinking, other people need to read this!  And so that is why I am starting this public blog.  I will be moving some of my posts from my private blog to this new one very soon.

For now, I thought I’d start out by explaining  how I came up with the name for my blog.

In 2002 I was headed to Vancouver, British Columbia for one of the biggest adventures of my life.I was going (initially) for 7 weeks in the summer to be a missionary to inner city kids.You have to realize that I had lived in the same state, even in the same city, for my entire life. In fact, I had lived within a few blocks of the same place my entire life!

So, going to another place was huge. I was going to say country, because, well Canada is separate from the US, but it’s very similar and nothing like going to Colombia, South America, which I’ll hopefully write about another time.

Anyways, I was getting ready to graduate college and was looking to do something different before I entered the work force full-time. A year or so earlier I had heard Tony Campolo preach about a missions opportunity. I longed to go, but figured I had better finish school first.

Then I met someone who had actually done a different type of missions thing that Tony Campolo had started. I was intrigued.

But, my church had a trip to Mexico planned during the same time and I wondered if I should go on that trip instead. Though it only was for 10 days or so.

(My next post will be about an interesting conversation that I had with a counselor about choosing which trip to take another time).  In the end, I went to Canada.

I am a planner and not big on the unknown, yet I really had no idea what I’d be doing in Canada! I quit my part-time job to go and I remember my co-workers asking what exactly I’d be doing there. I did know I’d be working with kids, but that’s about all I knew. Which for me, wouldn’t normally be enough information for me to make the jump and get involved.

Anyways, perhaps I can write more about my time in Canada later, but this post is getting too long. Be forewarned, most of my posts will probably be too long 🙂

So, I was a bit freaked at the prospect of going to Vancouver, not knowing for sure what I’d be doing, and not knowing a single soul that I’d be working with/living with there.

So on the plane ride I noticed there was a print out of a Bible verse on my tray. And it came from Psalms 136

I wish I could say that I still have that slip of paper, but I don’t 😦

But I’ve never forgotten it. To me it was an encouragement from God that all was going to be okay.

There is also a great song that has those words in it:

Forever

Every time I hear that song or Psalm, it is a reminder of God’s faithfulness. And that, my friends, is how I came up with the name for this blog.