Walking Through Jungles, Deserts, and Valleys
Immediately as I entered the coliseum that Friday afternoon, I scanned the crowd for familiar faces. Section 130, section 133, ah section 136, there they are. 15 people sat high above, all here for me. I looked down, carefully following the line of students that would bring me towards my seat, seat R194.
The next hour crawled by full of “we are the future” mantras and names of fellow students. Finally, “Emily Michael Rypkema” rang through the coliseum and I smiled as I ran my thumb over the embossed name on my diploma, whispering a thank you as I shook the President’s hand.
“Ladies and Gentlemen,” they said. “Please move your tassels from right to left. Congratulations.”
Just like that, four years at Clemson were over.
Post-grad Bliss, or...
I quickly realized that the ideal “post-grad lifestyle” was something I had concocted. A perfect mix of success, stability, and adventure. Ha. Instead, I found looming uncertainty.
I moved home, excited for a little time with my family and hometown best friends, but ran into a few obstacles. One being, that I needed to be fully funded for my internship before I could make plans to fly. Panic engulfed me as soon as I realized this wouldn’t be a three-week vacation but an entire summer at home.
I received a box of letters as my graduation gift from my friends and family, coordinated by my sister, Liz. Each one held so much love, advice, and encouragement. One specifically from my friend, Carly, who wrote about “finding God’s Will” and how we tend to worry so much about making sure we are where He wants us to be. However, He wants us to be in a place where we are loving others while we love Him. These words captured my heart and gave me a new perspective on where He wants me.
What this Means for Costa Rica
And so this is where I am, here in Lexington, spending time with the ones around me while continuing to grow and love Him through this uncomfortable and uncertain season.
I am hoping to be able to fly out in August for the intended six months and as of now I have almost 70% of the 9,800. It’s challenging... letting go of whatever control I think I may have and trusting God to provide for ALL of my needs on His own timing. I am constantly reminding myself that He will orchestrate these next six months along with the rest of my future but I need to give it to Him; this trip, my student loans, my future career.
I am asking everyone of you to pray that God will use this time at home to strengthen and equip me for what He has planned for me in Costa Rica.
Thank you to everyone -- family, friends, even strangers -- for your support and prayers for me throughout this season.
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