When I look back at the past year, I’m overcome with feelings of gratitude and humility. I sold my house, moved to a new and unfamiliar city, and started an intense accelerated nursing program.
After setting foot into my current church home, I felt a strong peace and knew it was where I was meant to be. I met friend after friend and was soon plugged into an amazing life group. One that is filled with encouraging and loving people. People who are committed to walking alongside of me and willing to extend grace when I desperately need it the most. People who are filled with wisdom and play an integral part in my story.
On one of my clinical rotations in May, I felt a strong desire to approach a pretty blonde who was wearing a white jacket and was sitting at a computer. After saying hi, our conversation navigated its way to church and being placed in this city by the Lord. She smiled, agreed, and I told her we should hang out. After many text messages, phone calls, coffee dates, walks, hikes, and runs, we have become incredible friends. She shares my love for Jesus, Kenya, and coffee, and has become the ultimate encouragement in my running endeavors.
I was able to go to a wedding in June to witness two friends get married in the beautiful city of Charleston, SC. Dedicated to one another and striving to maintain a marriage centered around the Lord, their story is another incredible picture of how faithful our heavenly Father is.
In August, my sweet roommate moved in. I am so blessed that the Lord chose to place her with me. With her here, I’ve learned how to give and receive grace, how to allow someone to love me on their conditions and not just mine, and I’ve learned just how much I needed her. I’ve been able to practice loving her in action, even when my selfishness pushes me to lock myself in my room and become a hermit. With her, I’ve learned that we are designed to live in community with one another, and that each new relationship will prepare us for what is in store next. In living with and working through things with her, I am blessing my future husband.
Last year, I learned what it’s like to live with less. I found creative ways to give gifts, including teaching myself how to knit! I made two scarves [here’s one], and am currently working on a coffee sleeve. I also shopped at the dollar store more times than I can count, and I am thoroughly satisfied with their dishwashing liquid and last-minute-kid-gifts!
I learned how to maintain friendships, and how to let go of friendships. I learned that friendships go through seasons, and that letting go and giving it to God allows me to be free. Free to let my heart heal, and free to receive new blessings from the Lord. I am thankful and will continue to cherish the ones who walked with me in different stages of my life.
I learned that even the trials that I received ran through my Father’s hands first before they came to me. That when I am suffering, it is producing perseverance, character, and hope (Romans 5:3-5). And that in being transparent with my suffering, I was allowing others to speak truth into my aching soul and to love on me.
I learned that God is truly all that I will ever want or need. In my new and unfamiliar city, I formed a bond with Him that I never want to give up. During my season of loneliness, I grew a newfound wisdom and became more cognizant of His incredible blessings. I had crazy dreams that I wrote down and watched unfold, escalating my faith even higher.
I was able to fully understand that this life is an adventure and I just have one simple task: to love others each day like Jesus did. I could be their first and last picture of the gospel. Am I being a good or bad example of that?
With one month left of nursing school, I am overjoyed and at peace with where my Father has me. I don’t know where He will lead me, but I do know that it’s a daily pursuit and decision to trust Him. Deciding to trust in His plans, not mine. I look forward to continuing to run the race and watching His story unfold.
I am abundantly blessed.