Thursday, July 15, 2010

Safe and Sound...

That's right, after 32 hours of traveling around the world, I've made it back! And I'm glad to be back for sure, though I miss Turkey dearly. I wrote this in my journal yesterday: "I just left so many good conversations, so many fun evenings, and little bits of my soul over there..." I feel like I really need to go back in this lifetime. So usually when someone I love is coming home from a long trip, I advise them to choose three words or short phrases to describe their time. It's an easy way to answer the ever-perplexing question, "how was _____?" But it's also a good way to begin a longer conversation with the people who actually care! Now I'm the one to have taken a long trip, so I shall heed my own advice.

Ready? Turkey was: a beautiful country, full of life lessons, and highly relational.

Turkey was a beautiful country because God is amazing. Seriously! We saw so many natural wonders at sea, on the beach, in the mountains, at sunrise, on the harbor... oh my goodness, I could go on and on. My expectations were significantly blown away. It was a beautiful country also because of Turkish culture. These people are so hospitable. I felt surprisingly comfortable in Turkey, though it is so different from anything I'd ever experienced. Turks, who I can only describe as a lovely mix between Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean, are really pretty people!

Turkey was full of life lessons... many of these life lessons came from my high schoolers. They showed me the importance of community by the way they interacted with one another at camp. Olive Grove serves as one of their only physical Christian communities in life and as such, holds extreme importance for them. I learned how to better be a servant. Truthfully, I needed an attitude adjustment just about every day of camp. The Lord was patient and gracious to me, which I was very grateful for. Other lessons I encountered I think I've already written about.

*interruption: my mom just asked me to write a list of things I want at the grocery store...I already told her all I want is steak and she hasn't seemed to realize I REALLY want it. So I wrote: hot cheetos, juicy-juice, fruit roll-ups, sunny delight, bologna, gushers...maybe some passive aggressive hilarity will cause her to understand.

Turkey was highly relational. I made many fantastic friends during my time there. Friends I'm already missing, ones who will last. Not only were friendships among the counselors at camp made, I also bonded in special ways with some of my campers. Praise the Lord for Facebook (seriously!).

My soul's debrief will continue and I'm sure I'll keep you posted. Soon, I'll be off to other summer adventures.

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