Has it hit you yet?

I heard this question so much before I left and in the first few weeks of being in Europe. I always said no and tonight I am finally realizing that I have lived here and seen amazing things, done things only done with the help of God, and seen miracles the size of mountains.

Yes, it has finally hit me.
Now that I'm preparing for graduation, I cannot believe that I've been to two of the major cities in the world...I've lived in them! I've been to Spain, I've surfed, I went to the beach everyday for 2 months, I've eaten real food. Some people would say, "do the 'crazy' things...while you're young." And I say, "Do the crazy things." I'm not doing anything that millions of people haven't already done. I'm not seeing anything "first." I'm walking where feet have already been! That's encouraging, though! I am not a tourist, of course I have seen all the stuff, but the only architecture I'm interested in is that which God has made. The mountains, the ocean, the islands, the Great Plains...no man can ever come close to what He has made. In my time away, I've killed my materialism or rather Jesus took it and trashed it, and I am so thankful for that. It's a reminder though to hold things with an open hand or it just hurts more.

I will be focusing on making relationships with women. What I've learned is that while I was being raised I never had a true mother or father figure. I was raised by my grandmother, whom I have an excellent relationship with now, but then it was very tough. So I've never known how to have good relationships with men or with women. I want to go home and work hard for that, first and foremost with Jesus, always...and then with other women. I have no interest in being friends with men the first few months that I'm home. Most girls have no problems having 'guy' friends but since they don't like 'drama' they never have girlfriends. I'm not in high school anymore, I understand now that you need strongly rooted women to support you throughout life.

Jesus, take all of my life. It is yours.

I'm ready for Wal-Mart at 12 AM to grab Doritos, cream cheese, and nail polish. I'm ready to be able to buy 2 double cheeseburgers, fries, and a parfait for less than $5.

Europe is amazing, but it isn't home, and on that note neither is America. Home is everywhere even when you don't have a place to lay your head. But, America is what I know.

For 20 years, it's all I've ever known and I am reminded that I have to be careful. God will make me strong, He will prosper me, because He has promised me, but I must keep myself accountable as well.

In December, I turn 21, and I won't be drinking. From July 1, 2012 to July 1, 2013 I will be sober for an entire year. Why? Not because I'm 'religious.' I believe that Jesus created wine from water, I believe that drinking can be honoring to God, and I know that I have never consumed alcohol for the glory of God.

It's a learning curve and I am definitely learning.