Looking Back, Looking Forward

IMG_8469This week feels a bit messy. I moved from one place to another, and boxes followed me. They needed to be packed, unpacked, and then packed again. In 3 days I will unpack for the last time until August. And then this weird cycle will begin again, at least that’s the plan. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned this semester, it’s that this plan is fluid.

Last Saturday, I walked across a stage, was handed a piece of paper, and took some pictures with family and friends after moving a tassel to the left side my awkward-looking cap. The graduation march has been stuck in my head ever since which seems like a form of cruel and unusual punishment. It’s been a bitter-sweet sort of time.

This past week, though, has felt like a gift in the midst of a pile of mess. I’ve been given the chance to reflect, to think about the past three years and marvel at the growth and change. I sat in a coffee shop with a dear friend and mentor on Thursday as she asked me to name specific meaningful or spiritual moments that happened during these Taylor years. In that moment, a million snapshots came to my mind because these years have been one giant beautiful mess of a gift and saying goodbye has been more difficult than I would have imagined. So this week I’ve found myself remembering and writing and reflecting. And also thanking because it seems like an army of people helped me walk across that stage.

And in the midst of this “looking back,” I’m looking forward. It’s a strange combination, and it’s making my brain a little tired. On Friday I head out on a new adventure. I’m not nervous yet, and that makes me sort of nervous. In fact, I’m finding that with each box I repack, each shirt I fold, my heart races with anticipation. This adventure is unlike anything I’ve done before, but it’s also as common to college students as 8 am classes. This summer I will be joining about 15 other interns at HOPE International in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Officially, my title is “Executive Intern to the President of HOPE.” I’m not going to act like I understand what this really means, but I know it will include some kind of writing and lots of big picture planning.

All I really know is that it’s been a wild ride getting here, and that seems to be the theme in all of this. As I look back at these Taylor years, I see the wild fingerprints of God, the way everything seemed so chaotic but in reality, God was orchestrating things that I couldn’t see. And as I look back at my journey to HOPE, it already seems a bit wild, a story that only can be written by God and one that I am confident he will continue to write.

But for now, I find myself thankful for the journey, the steps he has walked with me, the faithfulness he has shown. And I have to believe that just as he has orchestrated the seemingly impossible in the past, he will continue to do so in the future. So I will continue to look back and look forward and pack another box.

Here’s to today, the journey it’s been and the gift it will bring tomorrow.

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