It was good to be there: to hear those lectures, sit in those chairs, walk those grounds, be among those people. I felt professionally revived in so many ways. I felt the passion for my work returning to me. I felt excited again to be who I am and do what I do. It definitely started some wheels turning.
I was able to attend church while I was there, able to see so many people who are so very dear to me, to receive hugs and kisses and blessings. It was so very good to be there: to sit in those pews, sing those songs, walk those halls, be among those people. I felt spiritually revived in so many ways.
I talked with so many dear friends. I talked with so many sweet people that I love so dearly; countless people who have so deeply enriched my life. I talked with my dear friend Harold, it took me some time to get to him, but when I did, oh how he filled my heart. He said the sweetest words to me: “you know you just belong here”. His words struck me, moved me. I smiled, squeezed his shoulder, walked away.
You know you just belong here.
Isn’t that what we all desperately long for? A place to belong, to fit, to feel at peace. Having moved 7 times in the last few years I know the power of that in a way that I didn’t understand before. Belonging has the ability to give one value, to validate their life.
I have changed in exponential ways the past few years. The person I was in the fall of 2007 is not the person that I am today. I am better for the changes, I am a differnt person. There was a time when I wasn’t sure who I was, what I was, what I wanted, where I wanted to go. I have a resolute understanding of those things now. Life at times gives you difficult challenges, tasks, and bends in the road for the purpose of molding you. I once said that I felt like life was just happening to me and I was just a participant, but I realize it was during those times that I was allowing God to work in my life to mold me. Those were times when I didn’t have the energy to participate and so I yielded and was molded by Him for Him.
The room that I sat in at the conference had a big mirror in the back. A Vanderbilt logo was on it and it had a slogan. I read it multiple times every day. “It’s who we are.” Funny how marketing propaganda can work to encourage and excite you.