So this is it, huh? It is truly hard to imagine that altered has run its course. We began this journey 60 days ago with a handful of commitments from students who said they wanted to impact their worlds. To see their worlds changed. Not necessarily the world, but their world.
The idea is that as we surrender to God's plan, we can be a part of seeing our futures altered, our friends altered, our families altered.
Our worlds altered.
Before I began this blog, I took time to look back and remember some of the previous blog entries. Some of which was about what I wrote. More of it was about what you wrote. Take time this weekend, look back on this journey. What did you write? What did you wish you wrote?
I was amazed at some of the comments. There were some that stand out. There was one particular that stood out throughout this blog.
See, sometimes our faith is open, it's raw, it's real. We lay out our spiritual ugliness, scabs and all. We're sinners in need of God's grace.
But at the same time, we're God's children who've been redeemed. We must never forget the early principles of Romans 12. We can't conform to the pressures of this world. No matter how difficult it may seem. But we must be transformed and renewed.
Throughout this journey, YOU have challenged me. There was the physical challenge of getting up early enough to post the blog before you had to go to school. Sorry, Alyson, but I failed this morning in getting up early enough for you to get it before school. I'll never forget the time in Gulfport and trying to get done as people were reading over my shoulder. That was probably my favorite portion of the blogotional as I got to see how practical it was becoming for everyone.
But the challenge spiritually was far greater. Everyday, I felt the need to say something that would add to the journey. Sometimes I failed. Other times God gave me a nugget to share that impressed me with its clarity and direction. That definitely wasn't me. But I'm thankful.
So now the training wheels have come off. Tomorrow, we begin a post-altered journey. Today I'm there for the final push. Then freedom. But not in the sense of freedom from something, but rather freedom to something. For what God has begun in your life must continue. As I let go, I expect each of you to soar. And to enjoy the rush as the air breezes through your hair. At times, the bike might seem wobbily, but persevere. You can do it.
Two words I want to leave you with. The first is that word persevere. A new journey is beginning and some will be tempted to fall out of the routine. Don't succumb to that temptation. Stay strong.
The second is dialogue. The first 4-5 weeks of the blogotional were easier to write because of the dialogue that was going on. Your comments left me something to think about and write about. As we winded down, the comments became less and less.
As you approach Scripture, there should be constant dialogue. Ask questions of the text. Then discover. The most relevant questions we face are what does this Scripture mean? And How does that apply to my life?
Every time we read Scripture, we must be prepared to change, for it is a life-changing book. Read it as such. Not out of drudgery, but out of delight. Freedom.
So we reach this bittersweet end. I'm going to miss the daily ritual of waking up to write the thoughts that were on my mind. God had kinda laid out an outline early on for the direction we were going. Sometimes we followed that plan, sometimes I realized that I was following more of my plan and God altered it through the flexibility of the forum.
Thanks for the ride. It has been an amazing journey that has challenged me at every turn. Thanks for your devotion. Thanks for your commitment. Thanks for your love.
I'm definitely going to miss it.
What a ride.
But it's not over.
A new commitment is dawning. A new journey to encounter.
So I push off, and let you go.
Nervous, but excited.
And with a tear in my eye.
You're growing up, and I'm proud.
But a little scared by that.