September has been a whirlwind of a month for us. We spent the first two weeks back in Texas, squeezing, loving, and spending quality time with our families.
went to high school football games and parades,
had cookouts, including morning doughnut runs (thanks, Dad!)
celebrated everyone’s birthday (I don’t like missing birthdays, so we had a party for everyone so we could be there),
drank coffee, sat outside, and just enjoyed being home.
We also have two new, precious nieces (Berkley and Tennessee) who were in desperate need of some love from their aunt and uncle.
In the middle of September, Dustin and I were a part of our fourth G42 graduation, and with each one, I am blown away by God’s transformation in the lives of our interns. The nervous twenty-somethings that we pick up from the airport the first day they arrive, to the confident, focused adults that leave after six months is incredible. There is an unspeakable change in their lives that happens when they are at G42. Yes, they learn how to make a business plan, how to incorporate media and the arts to their ideas, how to church plant, etc., but honestly, they learn way more than that. What I have gathered from sitting through these graduations is that the lessons they take away from this place are about character, community, excellence, and God’s unimaginable love for us and the rest of the world.
The night of graduation, Dustin stood up and gave a great piece of advice, as the interns were getting ready to leave. ‘It’s all about people.’ Yes, it’s all about God, but after that, it’s all about people. He went on to talk about our time at home, and when people ask what we miss the most about Texas, it’s not the food, it’s not the breath-taking sunrises and sunsets, it’s the people that we love the most. And as we got on the plane to travel halfway around the world back to Spain, tears streaming down my face as we told our families goodbye (thank goodness Dustin can hold it together better than me!), and we ask ourselves why we put everyone through such grief every time we leave, it is because we come back for the people. In 1 John 4, God calls us to love one another because he has shown us the perfect picture of love through giving us His Son, Jesus. ‘Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another’ (1 Jn. 4:11).
We didn’t move to Spain for the culture, the food, the language, or the landscape. We didn’t move to Spain for the adventure. We moved here because there are people who need to find their calling, put legs to their dreams, and serve the Lord with their whole hearts. We moved here because our generation needs to grow up, take responsibility, and lead our world into the loving arms of Jesus Christ. We moved here because God wants his family back, and we are doing our small part to lead them there.
So as I start teaching my precious Spanish students today, and as we get ready for a new term at G42 next week, I want God to continue to remind me that it is not about the place, but it’s about the people.
(Note: I realize the pictures are a little lopsided, but someone else took pictures at graduation, and I have yet to receive them!)
P.S. Do you think this little one has missed her Dustin??