My Goal: To Love Unconditionally

I don't know what's wrong with me today. I have been fine. I went to Staff Training this past week for Camp David and it was great. I got excited for Camp, I got fired up, I even shared my testimony, as terrifying as it was to expose myself to that many people like that. I am really glad I did though. The response was wonderful. I found out that so many people had almost the same story and no one seemed to change the way they thought of me.
It is so amazing to have people like that in my life. People who will stand by me no matter what.
Anyways, it was a wonderful week. I got to catch up with good friends, meet new people and get closer to some others. The training is very thourough, if a little monotonous, but it is really great. It has prepared me quite a bit for the Summer. Last summer was just so crazy and I was so new. This year I really know what I am supposed to be doing, so I hope it goes even better.
The last night we played capture the flag and it was one intense game, though my ribs suffered quite a bit from incessant tackling.
We went to bed at 12:45 and I didn't get to sleep until 1:15-ish. I was unaware that the schedule for the morning was back an hour so we could sleep and I woke up at 5:45 to get ready.........needless to say, I was exhausted. I am surprised I stayed awake for 6 hours of CPR/First Aid training which I am also really glad I could learn.
So all in all it was a good week. But I am afraid it's going to get bad here soon. There is a wall that everyone hits every year or so where they just don't think they can go any further and I am about to hit that wall.
It's really bad timing. Last year I hit the wall *before* Camp...this year however......
It seemed to start this morning at the Rolla Sasquatch-cestenial/Summerfest.
I don't know what I was feeling, but all of the sudden I panicked. Was I going to be here the rest of my life? What if the college I am considering doesn't work out? What if God has other plans for me that like it or not I have to follow? What if I marry an accountant and bake pies and drive my constantly texting, brand-name wearing middle-class American kids to soccer and cheerleading practice? I can't live like this! But what if I have to? What if there is no other choice?
You have no idea how painful it is to know that every single day I am here, I am feeling farther and farther away from my people in Africa, from the person I am striving to become. I *need* to get home this summer, but it's not going to happen, and that breaks my heart. I want to go home and feel like my old self for a little while.
I need to at least go somewhere. I need to see a new sight. Hear a new language. Feel a different atmosphere. I am the only sedentary rogue gypsy I know of!!
The point of being a Rogue Gypsy is to travel even farther off the "normal" path than normal "gypsies" do. And yet here I am in Rolla, Missouri, watching the parade and looking at old cars.
It's good for awhile. But the thing is, I am beginning to like it. I am beginning to get a feel for this whole small town life. I like knowing people everywhere I go. I like the spring turning into summer. I like the idea of being able to walk to the library, of having family near. But I don't want to like it! I like this life but I LOVE traveling, adventuring in the unknown, helping the needy people of the world. I know that if it comes down to either staying here or taking an opportunity to help elsewhere, I would go somewhere else at the drop of a hat. And I don't want to get close to anyone anymore. I always love them too much and I know the pain of having to leave an entire life I have built....and I don't want to ever have to do that again.
I don't want to be the one who loves so much. It hurts too much! But it is a kind of pain I have to live with. Because I also know the pain of living without it. the pain of pushing people away because if I love them then they will end up leaving me or I them. And let me tell you, the pain of living without loving is so much worse.
I have to fight the tendancy every day to push my loved ones away, to shut them out because love hurts. It hurts so much, but I can't help it.
Sometimes I think the people closest to me think that I am a little cold, a little aloof and a lot of the time I am. I try not to be, but I am tired of getting hurt. I just really wish they could get a glimpse into my mind and see that I love them. I love everyone in my life so much.....(ok, so not *everyone* but you know what I mean) and I want them to know that. I love hearing and saying the words "I love you" and them being honest. I love getting and giving genuine hugs. I love feeling loved and appreciated. I really do. Not excessively, but to a certain extent....everyone does. Remember that, because I am going to try to.

I always feel so much better after writing things out. I start out with a problem and end with a solution. I am going to try my best to make every day count. I am not going to wait for someone else to break down my walls. I am taking a sledge hammer to them myself. Every day might be the last day I have to tell my mom how much I appreciate and respect her. My last chance to tell my sisters that they are the most beautiful things God has ever created. My last chance to thank my Grandpa for making my life joyful on a daily tell Austin how much he means to me as a friend and a make my life count for something bigger than myself.
And that starts with Camp. Did I take on too much? Yes. Yes I did, and I am willing to accept that. But this is my chance to start living out love.
Odds are I will get hurt many, many times. But the ratio of the pain to the joy will be so outstandingly worth it! Please be praying for me these next few weeks as I try to just open up the flood gates and let every ounce of my love pour out onto my friends and family and these Campers I was put in Rolla to serve.
Goodnight to all of you bloggers out there.



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