Showing posts from October, 2014

The Here and Now

Conflicted. That was what I was going to originally entitle this post.

That's how I feel right now. I'm conflicted. As I approach the 50-days-until-home mark, my feelings are all mixed up. I am so very excited to go home and see my family. I've been away from home for ten months now. That is a long time. Longer than I've ever been gone before. The people (and places) I love are all associated with home - South Carolina. Part of me is counting down the days.

The other part isn't, though. In spite of all the ups and downs (or perhaps because of them), I have truly enjoyed my time in France. I still pinch myself when I realize I've been to Paris four different times now and I spent a week in Italy to celebrate my birthday. The best part, by far, has been the people. All the beautiful, precious friendships. I believe I am in denial; I can't quite wrap my head around the thought that we will have to say goodbye.

Part of me can't wait to leave, part of me nev…


That was my hash tag yesterday.

Yesterday was the International Mission Board's (IMB) Day of Prayer for European People. If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you might have seen my virtual prayer walk of the city throughout the day.

International missions has always seemed that: international. I've met international missionaries; I've heard and read the stories. But they all seemed so far away. So when I saw that the IMB had a day of prayer for European people, I was really excited. I'm in Europe after all! This day wasn't just a day of prayer for a far away land. It was for my home for the year. My European country, my city. The people I know.

I decided the evening before to prayer walk around the city. Quite honestly, it isn't something that I had done before. But I had the chance to pray in the city, so I didn't want to just sit at home.

Along the way, I started snapping photos on my iPod so that I could share my prayer walk with others. I wanted to …

I'm Not Perfect

I'm not perfect.

That's actually harder to say than I'd like to admit.

You see, I try to make sure that I look like I have it all together. Truth is I don't really.

Growing up, I was the preacher's daughter. That is a very public position to be in. And - in spite of my parents best efforts to remind me that they didn't have any expectations because I was the preacher's daughter - I felt the pressure to be perfect.

Now I'm not saying I ever was; but I tried my hardest to be a good girl. To do the things I was supposed to and to live by all the rules. I wanted to be a good example.

And I started out with the right intentions. I wanted to serve Jesus. So I helped around the church and I did the missions trips. All the things I was supposed to or "expected" to do. But over time I lost the "why". And I started doing those things because I thought that is what people expected me to do. I had built up an image of me that looked good; I did…


Today my church back at home, Pleasant Hill Baptist, will celebrate their annual "Homecoming" day.
And for the first time in my entire life, I will not be attending; I won't be "coming home."
If you're unfamiliar with the tradition of homecoming, let me explain. Homecoming is celebrated mostly by Southern American churches. It's held annually normally in the summer or fall. The idea behind the day is that people who used to go to the church but do not any more - mostly because they moved away - are invited to come to back and enjoy a day of fellowship at their old "home" church. Thus, the name "Homecoming." This tradition is celebrated by inviting previous preachers to come and preach the sermon that morning. The worship service is normally followed by a potluck meal where everyone gets to visit and catch up with friends and family. It really is a fun day.
Right now the word homecoming has three different meanings for me.
The first, …