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A year in review...

A year ago today, I set foot in Albuquerque. It is unbelievable that I've been here this long. At the same time it feels that I've been here much longer. It was funny to remember my arrival here with Tracy earlier this week, remembering how we both dealt with expectations when I got here.

So what all has happened in a year?

-I moved halfway across the country, I started a job that I wasn't at all prepared for.
-We brought in 4 families, we have 2 of those 4 left and 2 from the previous class.
-I've managed to visit home 3 times, I've had visits from 3 great friends from home and my mom to the great city of ABQ.
-I bought my first car.
-I've found my little piece of heaven in counterculture, a place of refuge for me that is awesome even if I still have my varying reservations about it.
-I've made some absolutely wonderful friends here that I could not imagine living without. They're seriously great.
-I've had to deal with the loss of friends, through moving away, parting paths and death.
-I made it to Denver, and got to hang out with a fellow US-2 for a few hours.
-I finally made it to San Francisco and loved every minute of it.
-I've gotten used to living alone, and honestly love it.

And many many more events. I couldn't even begin to list the great things I've done this past year.

I think most importantly of all, I've learned a lot about myself. I've really opened myself up to new experiences. Sure, college did that for me some, but in reality I still had the safety of friends, I think there were at least 20 kids from BBCHS that went to U of I my year, and most of them I was friends/acquaintances with. This opportunity has forced me to look beyond those friends and really let some great people get to know me.

I also have been blessed in ways unimaginable. People are often offering me a meal (I don't think I ate at home this week), I was blessed with a car for my first month here. I get gifts left and right that I am completely overwhelmed by.

Things have changed considerably. It is exciting and scary that I have a year left here, as we're gearing up for new families, the possibilities for things seem endless. I'm looking forward to really helping out with the youth group, I'm looking forward to working lots with our new families, I'm looking forward to new life, new opportunities and another new year.

I could never begin to really do justice to the amazing things that God has done in my life this year. Certainly, I have been thrown curve balls, I have had days where I just feel like walking away, but ultimately, I know that my purpose here is probably not always something I'm going to see results from. That is always hard for me, but I know that perspective is important to be aware of. It is easy to lose sight of the ultimate goal. It is easy to lose sight of the things that I'm working for and working towards. I am thankful for my friends and family back home who snap me back into reality often and to the great friends I've met here. I certainly wouldn't be near as comfortable with my time here if I didn't have such an amazing support group of people here taking really great care of me.

As a reminder to me about what I committed myself to when I first started all of this, I share with you the Wesleyan Prayer, a prayer that is incredibly important to United Methodist beliefs and roots:

I am no longer my own, but yours.
Put me to what you will, rank me with whom you will;
put me to doing, put me to suffering;
let me be employed for you or laid aside by you,
exalted for you or brought low for you;
let me be full, let me be empty;
let me have all things, let me have nothing;
I freely and wholeheartedly yield all things to your pleasure and disposal.
And now, glorious and blessed God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, you are mine and I am yours. So be it.
And the Covenant now made on earth, let it be ratified in heaven.

I pray that is my prayer this coming year.
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Maybe not do justice to, but what about justice with?

But on the whole, YES! Yes! Light a candle and close your eyes before the cross as you reach out to another, YES!

Rev. Craig

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:52 AM  

I have to say that becoming your friend over the last year has been a greater blessing to me then you my realize. It might even be one of the highest points of the year.

I'll always be a little sad that I waited until you moved away to really get to know you well.

Its been exciting to be privy to your growth over the last year!

Wow... I'm apparently feeling cheesy tonight!

By Blogger CSDL, at 12:06 AM  

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