Monday, October 05, 2009


Goodbye and Goodbye

Thursday was our last day of learning at MTI, and we went through a discussion on saying "Hello and Goodbye". More than anything it confirmed my notion that I am not so good at either of these practices. My hello's are often short, unintentional, sometimes insincere and too often catching me at a moment when I'm focused on something else. Goodbyes for me are something I don't like and don't do well with. It seems so trite to say a short goodbye after spending a lot of time with someone, creating memories, and being blessed by their friendship...therefore I often try to avoid farewells or just downplay them. My summation of it all was that I need to be more intentional about both.

Then came Friday, when many of us had to say our goodbyes to our fellow MTI SPLICEers. About half the class was staying for language training, but many of us were leaving for home and preparing to leave for the field. We had to rush through goodbyes in order to catch the airport shuttle, snapping as many pictures as possible, and then many stood out by the side of the road, some doing jumping jacks until our van was out of sight. A group of us were able to spend a few more hours together at the airport, which turned out to be a huge blessing as we reminisced about our experience and were able to take some time to say good goodbyes (I'm of the opinion that a good goodbye has to include a prayer for God's blessing and protection).

(the fellas of SPLICE)

(Jared and I were in growth group together...I was blessed! He and his wife, Stephanie, are serving in Japan

(My buddy Jake and I....already miss this kid. He gave me a handwritten card to remember him by)

(Robin was not only a phenomenal instructor, but quickly became a close friend also)

(Nate Hughes is pretty much the man! He and his wife, Emily, serve in the Czech Republic

(Scott Hara went to the Kingston campus in 2003 and helped build my apt, and Lord willing he and his wife, Ali, will be able to visit before they leave for Sudan)

(Dave taught me a lot and became a close friend. His wife, Beth, and son, Zane (1.5 years) also blessed my life in many ways. They were awesome!)

(Jeremy is the model older brother that most parents could only dream to have. He is grounded, tons of fun, loving, and wise)

(Jim Bo, what can I say, he is hilarious, has a huge heart, and lots of wisdom. He did steal my pig, but it was for a good reason...)

(SPLICE would not have been the same without Ben, perhaps that statement is more true for him than for anyone else. He is the life of the party and has a huge heart)

(some things about Indiana boys hold true regardless, and Bridger and I had a lot more in common than we did different. Hard times brought us together, praise God)

I had a crazy trip home, with my plane being halfway to Indiana before turning back to Denver for a medical emergency for one of the passengers. After sitting at Denver for nearly an hour while paramedics treated the passenger, we took off again and arrived in Indianapolis over two hours later than expected. Thankfully I have awesome parents who were still there to pick me up at 1:45am. Saturday I hung out with the family and got ready for my farewell at church.

Sunday was a huge blessing. My extended family showed tremendous support, with all my grandparents, aunts and uncles, and many cousins making the trip to lafayette to say goodbye. I also had some close friends come from Illinois, Wolcott, and Indianapolis which meant a lot to me. I'm very thankful for the willingness of Ted Hirstein (and Joyce and Troy) and Tom Hoffman (and Cathy) to come and lead the farewell service. Thanks to Bubba for bringing along his parents in the first place, and his friendship. Thanks to Kirby for making the effort to come out, even though it meant driving alone for 6 hours. Poppa Tones and Momma D, thank you for your love and support also. Thanks to all who came from near and far, I love you all.

Praise Jesus for good goodbyes. That way you are open and ready for all the blessings and opportunites God has waiting for you in JA!

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