They came. Ethan, our grandson, brought thirteen college students from Taylor University, ready for a spring break bereft of snow.
They left school during a snowstorm. They were ready for sun and warmth.
They arrived at 3 a.m. Sunday morning, having driven twenty hours through traffic jams, more snow, and mountains. They were ready for rest, and we were prepared to give them space for it.
People have been amazed that we’d choose to have them stay at our home. We’re used to people coming and going. We have grands who come down just to get drinks and treats, so we know what it’s like to be prepared for the needs of the young.
It’s been fun. And more than eye-opening, in a pleasant and gracious way.
What impressed me first was the community these kids have developed with one another. Nobody really knew anyone else before they arrived at college, but Taylor has been known for connecting groups of students, different wings of the guys and girls dorms, to act as brother/sister floors. To do things together and hopefully create relationships that will make transitioning to college fun and less fretful.
It doesn’t always work well. But with this group, it has.
There is a benefit of life friends, people you meet and connect with in meaningful ways who will be part of your life for a long time to come. It’s a pleasant surprise to find people who will care and commit to a relationship long-term.
It’s been so much easier than I’d anticipated.
We left one night for a meeting, and all fourteen were involved in making dinner for themselves, different stations providing different parts of the meal. The thought that blew through my mind was, “I’m gonna have a lot to clean up when I get home.”
We came back to a clean kitchen, everything put away, better than when I’d left it.
Who knew it would be so easy to house so many?
Too often our lack of understanding keeps us from pursuing what could be truly beneficial for us. Fear, the unknown, and previous bad experiences can keep us from trying what could be helpful to us.
The Bible speaks of our knowledge this side of heaven being incomplete. We don’t know what we don’t know. In 1 Corinthians, the penultimate chapter on love, it describes our experience here as incomplete.
“We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be canceled.” 1 Corinthians 13:10
People hesitate to pursue knowing God further because they THINK what He may ask of them is more than they can give. They don’t want to be controlled by Someone outside themselves.
That’s not who God is.
He’s a loving Father, a compassionate Savior, a present Help in all that occurs in our lives.
But you have to ask Him to engage Him. He never pushes Himself on anyone.
Choosing to pursue God is better than we can anticipate. Like hosting this amazing group of young people, it has been a remarkable experience for us.
Choosing God is so much better than anything this world can offer.
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