A New Adventure After Walkabout

My nine month adventure called Walkabout is over. I spent nine months promoting and living Camp Eagle’s mission statement to inspire Christ-like change through outdoor adventure, Biblical truth and authentic relationships, but living under that mission statement the emphasis was highly placed on community and service. The past nine months I faced adventure into the unknown and embraced it through backpacking, exploring how to study the Bible, systematic theology and world views, and living with my peers, but now that it’s over how is that translated? In short, I am strong, I am equipped, but I’m still rejected, I’m still judged for being different and accused of being someone I am not by my peers. I’ve been called beautiful because I rock short hair and strong because I stand firm, but I’ve also been called a bully. I was often left unsupported by people around me as I desired to continue in camp ministry and taking the SAT. People got upset with me for rejecting someone’s friendship and me constantly defending myself. Who am I? at one point I thought I was being a narcissist who only cared about myself. I had to learn not to worry about what others think of me and that has becomes more freeing whenever I just let go. When my mom was here for graduation she was not happy with everything she saw about how others treated me as she noticed the ongoing rejection, the lack of the community they emphasize, and made a comment on how people could be intimidated by mehappy Jazz wasn’t there and said how she thinks I have the spiritual gift of discernment.
If I could sum up the drama from January to May it was mostly centered on my relationship with Jazz. I didn’t like Jazz because she felt phony and impersonal as she lied to me. There’s more of a story there not worth sharing online.
Also a big thing this last semester was people trying to say they cared for me and that’s why they did what they did, and in my mind I thought, “if this is what care looks like I want to see what neglect looks like.”
Little did I know that I would see that as time went on. I got an email some time ago about an internship I applied for in Florida and they were really interested to have me and even though people asked how my interview went, I never felt encouraged. Then last week was our Walkabout debrief trip when I got a call about a day camp counselor job up in Seattle and it felt like a few people were really excited and happy for me. Mind you they were not leaders, nor people who boasted about how they cared for me… that says more to me than it should.
Now that Walkabout is over I don’t have to worry about that kind of negativity because I’m going to Seattle! God was really faithful to provide this job and the travel money even with all the lies surrounding me and I’m excited to begin this new chapter of following my dreams.


Confessions of Patience

Confession one: I’m not the most patient person. Ask my mom, or my dad, and my sisters, ask my childhood best friends, ask my best friend, even ask around full-time staff and my fellow Walkies at Camp Eagle, or really anyone who has been in my life the past 3 years. They’ll likely tell you I’m not very patient. As expected, God has had me wait as I stretch out toward my goals, but often I’m reminded to slow down, stop and smell the roses, watch the clouds, stargaze, backpack/hike/climb up a mountain, bike down jeep roads and kayak down rivers, or even living the ordinary to learn an extraordinary lesson. No city sidewalks for this trailblazer, because city roads head to known places, and I have no idea where I’m going.

February, and now March, have tested my ability to trust God and people, but also my patience for God’s plan and again, with people. Here’s what I learned about myself: If patience is prudence, than I’m reckless. If patience is a virtue, than I am fruitless.

Learning this came through taking my SAT today, March 5, 2016, although many people, primarily my peers had encouraged me to reschedule this test. I interpreted their words as ignorant and harsh, and honestly, it felt condescending. I felt better only when my mom reminded me to be confident, because as I thought, who knows me better than my mom?

Confession two: Taking advice from my peers feels more like positive peer pressure and the result is you’re trying to hard. Now, I know, I had to be reminded they did it because of their care for me. Not to sound brash, but most of my young life of 19 years I’ve had many more adult companions/relationships/friendships who have been my mom’s age or older much because they “got me” better than my peers throughout my entire childhood and young adult years. As a result, it puts my peers at a much lower level of expectation for advice and trust.
Life lesson, learn from the wise, run from the foolish, and live your own life because you run your own business. 
Obviously God is the manager of your life, but it’s the counsel He gives you to run it that counts.

I’m no philosopher; just a student of life, but I’d like to assume suggestive thinking makes us rule out our confidence to please other people, or to seek their approval and to live outside our heads. I’m not that kind of person, nor do I want to be.

Confession three: I don’t make agile decisions, but if you call that patience to make the right decision it’s less than easy for me to say that’s true. I’m impatient with God. A few days ago I had been in a somber mood that hits me every now and then as a wave, but this time I started crying to God. I told God I wanted to know where I was going after Walkabout. I got discontent and turned impatient quickly as I asked God to give me some sign to where I was going before I have to make a decision. Because of my impatience with God, it can usually result in lack of faith. I keep saying to God, take me anywhere but New Mexico!

I know if God wants me somewhere, He’ll give me that innate desire to go, and sometimes I just got to trust God through the unknown though it sometimes makes me feel uneasy.

Truth is, I’m not patient. Being impatient doesn’t make my life anymore interesting than when I am patient. “Good things come to those who wait patiently,” they say, but I’m here to say whether patient or impatient life is still life. Disappointments, failure, joy or peace you still have to bear the fact that you have to be patient to yield your shortcomings or highest expectations. You won’t change with more patience, but you may grow with more acceptance, because darling in life you’ll always be waiting.

Confession four: I feel lost. I don’t know where I am going or how to get there. I’m still waiting to see how Walkabout has changed me. I’m still waiting to see how God is changing me and using me. I’m still waiting on calls I may never receive. I’m waiting on my SAT scores that may be better or worse than I hope. I’m waiting on God. I’m uncomfortable and discontent as I wait with impatience. I’ve been told many times to be present and live in the moment, and I suppose that’s the closet thing to patience I may be able to achieve. That is if only I could remember patience is present and presence is peace.

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