Moving back to the States

My last blog was about the day I moved to Guatemala so I felt it was only fitting to also write about my return. When my parents broke the news to me that we would be moving to Guatemala, they mentioned that I could return for my senior year of high school if it worked out to do so. I worked diligently, well semi-diligently, at my schooling to finish two years in one and graduate a year early. But mid-year I decided that I really did want to come back to my hometown and do my senior year of high school with my friends. My parents kept their promise and arrangements were made for me to live with some friends from church.

The day came for me to fly home. I remember that I flew back to the states with a team that was returning the same day. I will never forget reaching into my bag and finding a letter that my mother had written to me. I pulled it out of my bag while sitting on the plane and started to read it. I got through just a few sentences and started tearing up. I decided the letter would have to wait until I was alone and would be able to read through it. My mom had written me the sweetest words about being proud of me and how she and dad would be praying for me. The letter truly touched my heart. I would miss my parents dearly. I was only 16 (ok- a month shy of 17) when I moved out of my parents house and into a whole new world without them by my side.

I never truly appreciated the sacrifice my parent’s made by letting me come back home until recently. As a parent now I understand wanting to please my children. And as a parent in the ministry there are definitely times I reward my kids for doing things that are above and beyond. I completely understand why my parents agreed to let me come home. But now I understand the heartache that they would have experienced when letting me go. My daughter is now several months shy of 17. She is one of my very best friends. Every night she tells me about her day and her stories are lengthy and detailed, but one of the highlights of my day. She laughs about things that occurred through the day and when she smiles her face lights up and her eyes twinkle. She is beautiful. How would it feel for me to drive her to the airport, load her onto a plane, and know that it would be months until I saw her again? Wow.

The Bible says in John 15:13, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” My parents laid down their own desires and allowed me to pursue my dreams. They chose to let me follow the path that God was leading me down. I know it was difficult. I know it was heart wrenching. I know it was LOVE. God’s love is what enables us to put others before ourselves. I will forever be grateful for the sacrifice my parents made that day. What an incredible example of trusting God and loving others.

Thanks, Mom and Dad, for putting my dreams and desires ahead of your own. I will forever be thankful for your love that was always felt even thousands of miles away! I love you!

Be Blessed Ya’ll

Julie

*Party of 8*

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