ten things i learned while living with a different family

this summer, i went to live and work at a small camp in colorado. i was blessed by the opportunity to stay in the mountains there for an extra month and live with one of the families on staff at the camp.

so, i did! i got to travel to nebraska and south dakota, go camping, and live life with them for a few more weeks. through out this time, i learned a lot, about myself, about others, and about serving. i feel like this summer changed me, and grew me, in ways that i didn’t expect, but were desperately needed.

 

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ten things i learned about myself and others this summer

  1. ¬†communication is important. i’ve never been all that great at communicating well and easily with other people, but understanding each other is pretty important when you live and work alongside new people. As you get to know each other better, you’ll learn the different ways you communicate, and the best way to live peaceably with different individuals. I found out that I like to know what’s needed and supposed to happen ahead of time. It helps me to be prepared and to work hard and well. I like to be able to hug people, or laugh with them.
  2. if you’re not flexible, you soon will be. I kinda like to pride myself on being flexible. Pride goes before a fall. if anything, living with a completely new family taught me that although my needs are usually forefront in my mind, they shouldn’t be. and theirs shouldn’t be. The needs that all of us need to be focused on are the needs for peace and love and patience between all of us who love God, and making sure that we are showing the love of Christ to others, saved and nonsaved alike.
  3. mornings are important. greeting each other is a huge part of building relationships, and sets the standard for the rest of the day. coffee always helps this process.
  4. put the phone away. you’re here because you care about these people and they care about you. they didn’t ask you to be here just so you can be mentally vacant. enjoy the limited time you have with them, distraction free.
  5. This is a short time in your life that will go by fast. savor it while you can. hug people, share your heart with them, let them listen to you and make sure you listen to them.
  6. there will be times you feel completely awkward, different, or foreign; that’s okay! you were raised in a different family, a different state, and a different country. you were taught things they didn’t learn, and yeah, of course they fold their towels in a way that you don’t. you can’t expect yourself to be the exact same person as they are.
  7. Sometimes you might do things completely new, like splitting wood, and accidentally get your hand stuck between the log and the back end of the splitter and bruise your palm and your heart a little bit, and basically, you’ve just gotta learn to love the process of trying new things.
  8. you need space on occasion. you need room to breathe, away from other humans. write a letter to someone you love. take a walk out in the pine trees and aspens. watch the sun set behind the mountains. read a good book. research something you’re passionate about or interested in.
  9. coffee really is a wonderful thing; it can help people bond, whether that’s early in the morning, or super late at night. it’s a common factor. embrace it.
  10. God gives us the people we need, even when we don’t expect it. it can be painful to leave, but it’s all worth it. Leave well.

 

love, daelynn