A Sweet Family Visit.

When I came to Evangel this past August as a freshman, I realized that I would be met with new opportunities: pursuing my passion of psychology, meeting peers with similar passions, growing in Christ, and gaining an independence to make my own decisions from choosing where to go for dinner to finding a new church home. When I said good-bye to my family in the South Side parking lot, I recognized that these new opportunities would also be faced with a few challenges, including not seeing my family for several weeks at a time.

I've attempted to cope with this distance in several ways--from texts, to Skype sessions, to Facebook, to phone calls. I'm thankful for how technology has sometimes made 500 miles almost non-existent. However, these modern conveniences could not begin to account for the warm hugs from my family and the feeling of being in their company.

That's why I was overjoyed when my family traveled the eight hours from Chicago to come visit this new corner of the world that I now call my "home away from home." When I saw them standing in the South Side parking lot, I ran to embrace them. Time seemed to melt away, and I felt at home in their arms. Over the course of the weekend, I had the privilege of spending time in Branson with them, as well as showing them around the Springfield area. We shared laughs, stories, and insights of what is happening at this time in our lives.

It was wonderful to be with them again. While I initially thought spending time with them would make me miss home more, it actually made me feel more adjusted here. As my family was able to visualize my new life here, I became assured anew that I'm truly building a new life here. I saw with a fresh perspective the opportunities I have to grow here as I shared with them all that God has taught me and is providing for me. I may not be able to have my family with me all the time, but I can learn to value the different forms of communication I do have. As we talk on the phone and I share about my day--and they share about theirs--we can remain close. With that reassurance, I can continue to pursue my studies here--becoming fully present where God has me for this season.  

  
We're all so photogenic. ;)
Hey, give us a break! It was a sunny day!

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