This is my last blog before I go home and I am officially done with finals and papers hoorah! I have one more class today and then I am cleaning out my locker and walking home with my roommate. Tomorrow is the farewell dinner for all of the USP students and all of the host families. It will be a fun time, especially to meet that families of other students, but it will also be a little depressing. Friday is our last full day with our families and the USP vans will come by to pick up all of our luggage and then we will walk to school early on Saturday morning. Satudrday we head for Entebbe (where the airport is) for debrief and then we fly out Tuesday night at 10:55. I arrive in Cincinatti at 4:30 on Wednesday afternoon. By this time next week I will be sitting in an airport in Michigan and even though the prospect is very exciting it is also extremely heart breaking for the family that I am leaving and don't know if I will ever see again (even though the chances of me coming back are much greater than some of the other students). It has been a busy time and hasn't been too hard to not think about leaving but now that I am done its time that I must for I have to pack and spend more intentional time with my family, for the time is almost up. I began packing last night so that Kristina and I did not have to do most of it at the same time, for our room is pretty small, so all that I have left is the last minute throw-it-into-the-suitecase packing, but I am excited because it looks like everything is going to fit into my luggage, my carry-on weighs a ton, but at least it is all fitting!
There are so many things that I will be bringing back with me though other than luggage full of souvenirs. Seeing how community exists in every facet of Christianity is incredible to me, it is such an integrated part, or at least it should be, but even though I love the idea it still scares me a little bit. I am not extraverted, I have more of a solitary one-on-one personality and the community concept confuses me into wandering if my introverted personality is okay. What is the line between healthy community and personal time/space? This is something that I am working on; it is a work in progress. Though I still have many questions, more than I came to the country with actually, I have started on a new quest of trying to figure out how God truly wants me to be living my life. For the way I live my life expresses what I believe the purpose of my life is. If I believe that the purpose of my life is to serve Christ then I need to be living out that purpose now. Coming to Uganda was supposed to help me in the process of figuring out where God wants me once I graduate, but it hasn’t had the effect I was expecting. I have felt called to Africa from a young age working with children, but my first semester of college I was introduced to human trafficking and the devastating effects that it is having all over the world. I have felt a passion for human trafficking victims since, but I have been unsure how it is to affect me long term, for prominent regions that are affected are in Eastern Europe and Southeast Asia. This semester I was hoping for a pull in one direction or another but since being here I can definitely see myself living here full term, but since being here I can definitely see myself in Eastern Europe too. One thing that sticks out to me though is the fact that after all the missionaries we have seen and all that they do here, I still have a desire to work with human trafficking victims. I had always wanted to work with younger children so when I began to focus on the teen to early twenties range of victims I thought it was a little strange, but since being here I am more than convinced that God is calling me to work with the age group of human trafficking victims.
I am still not sure where God wants me, but the knowledge that I have gained in different areas more than makes up for this. I have time. Something I am trying to instill in me…I don’t have to figure it out now because God knows and that is truly all that matters. Since being here I have also had a strange desire to get a master’s degree right after college, which I had never really gave serious thought to before. I am thinking maybe Women’s Studies; since I want to work with women I thought this might be reasonable and beneficial. At this point I do not really know where God is leading me and I am beginning to be okay with that. I am starting to realize that I don’t need to have it all figured out, life is an adventure so why plan it all out, it takes away the surprise and the thrill. I am still a planner, I don’t think that will change, but just knowing that God and the Christian community around me are here for me, to support and comfort me in all I do and all that happens, is very comforting. This semester has given me an abundance of opportunities (such as living with an incredible family, going to Rwanda and Kapchorwa, weekend trips, etc.) that have made me grow in many areas and that will continue to shape me throughout my life.
I will probably write again again once I am home to let everyone know how the rest of the time went such as the farewell dinner, debrief, and the travel home. I will see you all soon!