I officially survived the nutso part of my semester with only minor scars. Whew. I do still have my history paper to write, but considering it's about the female body in patristic leaders' writings, I am relishing getting up on my hobby horse for that one. Anyways... I'm back! Thanks for all the encouragement, everyone, via Facebook and texts. I sometimes forget that a big part of why I blog in the first place is to let my loved ones who are scattered everywhere know that I'm alive. And I always love hearing from you in return (aka Facebook stalking you and/or finding out what you're doing from mutual friends).
This week is Thanksgiving. Not Canadian Thanksgiving - real Thanksgiving. Though, now having experience both, I do think that we could stand to push ours up a few weeks, America. Everyone is already itchy for Christmas music this late in November, and it would give retailers a few more weeks to pelt us with candy canes and obscure techno carols. Just some constructive feedback, Mr. Lincoln.
Anyways, since I'm not heading back east for the official holiday, I thought I would reflect on what I am most thankful for this year: to be in Vancouver, at Regent, studying theology and, soon, the arts.
I am thankful for the job I spent three years at prior to coming to Regent. I learned the value of patience, hard work, and continuous improvement, as well as how to endure in a hard season. I am thankful for the opportunity to learn from many brilliant, fun people who taught me innumerable job skills that I could not have acquired without them. I also would not have the financial resources to be here without that job.
I am thankful for the financial and emotional support of my family, who always told me I could be anything, and really meant it. I am thankful for their consistency and just the fact that I know I can always go home to Knoxville, no matter how far away I roam.
I am thankful to live in a safe city that is clean and truly beautiful, and that has made me exponentially more thankful for days without rain. I am thankful to see the snow-capped mountains from my window. I am thankful for how gracious and kind the Canadian nation is - they are consistently positive and helpful as a people, and I will be lucky if I leave more like them.
I am thankful for the community I continue to establish here and continue to be humbled by how intelligent and compassionate everyone I meet seems to be. I am thankful for the supportive atmosphere that makes even a grim day in the library more fun and more "doable."
I am thankful for the intellectual environment that Regent has cultivated. I am thankful to be in a place that is neither antagonistic towards childlike faith nor towards challenging questions. I am thankful for the value that Regent places on acknowledging Jesus as Lord over all, while challenging the places that our assumptions are cultural and not Biblical. I am thankful to feel the freedom to find new answers to questions I have long asked and to feel the security that my faith is growing, not dying, in that process.
But most of all, I am thankful that this is the path God has for me right now. I don't think I realized how much I needed it until I got here, but I am so thankful that He has carved out these years for me to focus on Him and the imagination that He has given to mankind. I am thankful that I already know and love Him better for being here and am thankful that I will know and love Him more by the time I leave.
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving season?