Jesus is Home

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{My Mom opened the door and saw my Dad standing there with the biggest grin on his face. “I looked into his eyes, and I felt like I was at home.”}

Something I have discovered while being away in college is that home is where the people you love are. This means I have several homes: California, Tennessee, and a new place to add to the list… Spain.

It’s February and I realize that I have reached the half way mark of my year abroad.  From building some really good friendships here, singing in the Campus Choir, and volunteering with the AfterGlow team, Spain has become more like home. I am trying to soak in every minute because I know that these last three months will pass by quickly. Hiking to the mountains with friends, feeling encouraged by choir songs, and sharing who Jesus is to us as an AfterGlow team have been some of countless memories these past months.

Just a few snapshots of my life in Spain…

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Adventures with friends!

There’s something about being with good friends in nature that makes my heart happy. Seeing the breathtaking views that God made is the perfect way to spend Sabbath. It has become a tradition of ours to hike up the mountain behind the school and have worship at the top. After singing a few songs, a few of us share how we’ve experienced God during the past week and then pray together. I am so grateful for these friends that I can grow closer to Christ with. The moments when we can’t stop laughing and the moments we can’t stop talking about Jesus are the best.

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Campus Choir

Along with adventuring with friends, singing in the campus choir has also been an amazing experience. I think it is so beautiful how God reveals Himself through music. Last week we were singing a song called “Yo vere” (I will see) in a semi-circle and something special happened.  As I listened to the basses, the sopranos, and the altos sing their parts,  I felt His presence. The song contains these lyrics at the end, “Para ver al Rey su manto de justicia debo utilizar y en su fiesta allí sin prisas… Le veré” which means, “To see the King, I must use His cloak of righteousness and at His party there, without haste…. I will see You.” Even though it had been a stressful week, God used the song to remind me of the hope that I have in Him and His soon return.

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AfterGlow Fam

Lastly, being part of the AfterGlow team is one of many reasons that Spain has become more like home. I love it how our group has become like a family. It reminds me so much of my Campus Ministries family at Southern. Just as the CM team has had such a significant impact in my relationship with God, the AfterGlow team has helped me grow as well- especially in the area of being vulnerable.

Three weeks ago, the AfterGlow team put together a vespers that was about who Jesus is to us personally. As a group we wanted to give people various perspectives of a relationship with God. Five members of the team had the chance to the finish the sentence “Jesus is…” and share a brief experience. I had the opportunity to tell a short story that night…

For me, Jesus is home.

I remember asking my Mom when I was 16, “Mom, how did you know Dad was the one?” She smiled and began, “Well I had just started my first teaching job in Houston…” My Mom explained that she was far away from home and was feeling homesick. My Dad (solely a friend to my Mom at the time) decided to fly from California to visit her in Texas. Upon arrival, he stood outside the door of my Mom’s apartment and rang the doorbell. My Mom opened the door and saw my Dad standing there with the biggest grin on his face. “I looked into his eyes, and I felt like I was at home.”

Years later in Spain I felt homesick during Christmas break. It was the first time in 21 years that I was not at home with my family for Christmas. I was missing my Mom’s hugs, my Dad’s “cheesy” jokes, and playing basketball with my brother. But, how awesome it is that Jesus loves us through other people, such as one of my best friends. I told her how I was feeling and she prayed that “When I look in Jesus’ eyes, I’ll feel at home.” Her prayer touched me because it reminded me of my parents’ love story. Little did I know how much more Jesus would touch me in the week to come.

A week went by and as I was doing my devotionals, a sense of peace swept over me and I truly felt at home spending time with Jesus. Since then, devotional time has become I’m at home time with Jesus.

For me, home is more than California.

Home is more than Tennessee.

Home is more than Spain.

Jesus is Home.

It feels good to be home, Jesus. I looked into Your eyes and I just knew.

https://youtu.be/kS-ItZaO2K4

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