Looking back over the summer, it's been pretty good. Enjoyable, long, some new memories. Growing stronger in several friendships, watching the Olympics (more thoughts on those later). Yeah it's been great, but finally, at long, the day that has been shadowing my whole summer has come....
I'm leaving for college.
Now not leaving leaving mind you. I'll still be within 100 miles from home at The Master's College, I'll still come home many, if not most, weekends to keep up with old friends and family and to fellowship with my decade-old church body. It's not really that that's so scary, exciting, and amazing. It's the total change in life that I'm about to experience. It's the fact that I'll never be able to go back to the "old days" again. Nope, life is really here, I'm an adult now. The place I've called home ever since I was born won't quite have the same comfort and significance it has for the past 18 years. My parents have assured me that when I graduate, they still be here with open arms waiting to welcome me back. That's encouraging, yes, but that's not what I want. When I graduate, I want a well-paying job (or a job in the ministry, we'll see); I've sapped enough resources from my family the past 18 years, and by the time I graduate, I better be able to take care of myself (especially if I'm married or engaged, but again, we'll see).
I've been reading the widely popular book, Do Hard Things, by Alex and Brett Harris over the past couple weeks, and it's been nothing short of amazing. One of the things the pair stressed was this myth of adolescence. They talked long and often about "doing hard things", growing up, and taking responsibility, because as teens there's really nothing stopping us from impacting the world except ourselves. I've always thought of myself as more on the mature side, but experiences like preparing for college and reading Do Hard Things are starting to change that. Heck, I'm 18 already and I would be in hot water if my parents (like some) chose to turn me loose and kick me out of the house as soon as I reached adulthood. I may be smart, I may adequately take care of my few responsibilities, and I may be self-motivated enough to write on this blog even when nobody reads it. One thing I am not, though, is a self-sustaining, fully functional, adult human being. If I was on my own, I wouldn't know where to start! That's a little bit why college is so scary (yet exciting). I get new freedoms living on my own, freedoms that don't seem nearly as awesome and glorious as they did ten years ago, but I also am living on my own. I have most the supplies and bills paid, but now I'm the one who has to start footing a little bit of the bill.
That's more or less what I've been thinking about the past week. No question, I'm looking forward to college, but that's only the first step into life, into the real world. So here I go! It's time to start learning, and time to start doing truly hard and manly (in the biblical sense) things for the glory of God.
Speaking of which, that is the true comfort in all of this. No matter what happens during my entire lifetime, God will still loves me, He'll still cares for me, and His perfect plan will always be what is best for me. Better yet, I have the highest calling of all: to serve Jesus Christ. Whether I end up writing the script for next summer blockbuster or working at Costco, I'll have the chance to share the Gospel and glorify God with my life. And that, after all, is what really matters!