Safety will always be appealing to me, I think. I like the comfort of familiarity, the ease with which I can move through routines. But there comes a point at which I need to step outside of my comfort zone and challenge myself to live life beyond the confines of my habits, lest I become complacent. I am planning a trip to Europe with my best friend, and I couldn't be more excited for it. Along with my excitement comes some nervousness, but I'm okay with that. I am embracing the fact that no matter how much we plan for this trip, unexpected things will come up. We will learn how to face them together, and we will become better people and better friends for it.
I don't yet know where exactly we will travel to within Europe (there are just so many amazing options!). But I know that we will experience new cultures, see new things, taste new things, do new things, and come back with a greater appreciation for God's creation. Of course, I know the world does not revolve around me or our American culture, but it will be an entirely different experience to see how people in other countries live, and come back with new perspective. I know my worldview, approach to relationships, eating, cooking, business, communication, transportation, rest, work, time, and more will be challenged, and I sincerely look forward to having my world rocked by this experience.
This trip is going to be such a magnificent adventure. Not only will it take me outside the borders of my home country (which I have never done before), educating me about the history and culture of various other nations, but it will be the stepping stone to my future. This really is just the beginning. With my debts paid off, I will be free to pursue my dreams wherever I wish. I could move to California, Connecticut, or Cambridge. I could volunteer, work for a non-profit, work from home, start my own business, or work in another office. The opportunities are endless.
And yes, that is kind of scary. I'll admit it. When faced with the abundance of options I have, it seems a bit overwhelming at times. But it also is incredibly exciting and empowering. I am wholeheartedly seeking guidance and wisdom as I begin dreaming for this next chapter of my life, knowing that I am given this freedom for a reason. I am being entrusted with it, to use it wisely and not foolishly, to benefit more than just myself. I don't know yet what that looks like, but just the idea of using my life, my passions, my skills, and my time to make a small difference in some corner of the world makes me smile.
I have wanted for so long to feel like I have the capacity to make a difference, but I always let something hold me back from acting on it-- school, fear, debt, obligations (whether real or perceived). I now am choosing to let go of the weight of those commitments and step into whatever this next season brings. Life is waiting. And adventure is out there.