I hope you have had a wonderful holiday season, and Happy New Year! I have been very busy with getting ready to go to London, and I know it's been a long time since I have written anything. That is not, however, because nothing has been going on!
I think I said that I survived my first semester at Houghton College. Well, I did much more than survive; it was wonderful. In so many ways, it was so much more than I could have ever expected. I learned a lot, (both in my education and in living pretty much on my own,) made wonderful friends, and in general had a very satisfactory college experience. I now approach with confidence a semester in London, a study abroad program offered by Houghton College. The experiences I had over the last few months have taught me much about living outside the life I grew up with as a relatively protected, homeschooled farm girl, and I am thankful for having my time at Houghton as a more controlled environment for learning about the world before jumping into it. But now, I am anticipating living in London and by God's grace, I fully intend to have a wonderful time there.
One of the things I have learned over break is the importance of living and not merely existing. I had probably heard it/subconsciously known it before, but as I was reading Erwin McManus's book Chasing Daylight ( http://www.amazon.com/Chasing-Daylight-Seize-Power-Moment/dp/0785281134 ) it was brought to my attention that I must not hold back when God is clearing the path for me. I need to be watching for the opportunities He puts before me, and when He says 'go', I need to throw myself into it instead of asking "are You sure?". I am praying that He will give me courage and wisdom, because I sure need it! But, perhaps just as importantly, I'm praying that He will give me passion and vision, joy and strength, and that everything I do would honor Him - including taking off running when He says 'go'.
Life has been busy with getting ready to leave, a game night with the homeschool group, and still spending time with my family. We are also getting ready for Half Way Day, my family's annual mid-winter celebration. (This is usually held on February 1st. Since I will be out of the country at that time, my family kindly moved the celebration up to this Saturday so I will be able to join in!) We enjoy having something to look forward to in the middle of what can become very long, cold winters up here on Kelly Hill - an astonishing bounty of delicious food, and gifts for each other.
I hope you are all having a fantastic day/week/month/whenever you read this. If I don't blog again until then . . . I'll write from London, England!!!