I’ve been called out by a few of my family and friends for letting Steve do all the blogging about our journey. So, here goes my first shot at putting some thoughts together about this whirlwind adventure we’re undertaking.
I am accustomed to packing up my belongings, purging unnecessary things I’ve accumulated, saying goodbye to friends, and leaving congregations where I’ve been involved. I guess you could say this isn’t my first rodeo! Each time I feel nostalgic and realize I will miss seeing those friends on a regular basis. But mostly, I’m excited about what lies ahead. Growing up as a “preacher’s kid”, we moved 5 times…3 of which were before I started grade school. The toughest of those was when we moved to Tennessee from Spartanburg, SC, after having lived there from 1st grade through the middle of my junior year. When I learned of the move, I was devastated! As a young teen, I went into full “Little Miss Drama” mode. I was certain life would never be the same and I would never make as good of friends in Tennessee.
Well, God in his infinite wisdom always knows best. I can see clearly now (the pain is gone) that the move to Tennessee changed the course of my life. Being a social butterfly, I quickly made new friends and packed a lot of great memories into that year and a half before leaving for college. Speaking of college, this is where moving to Tennessee had the most impact. Several of my new friends were interested in going to David Lipscomb College in Nashville, TN. This is not a school that was anywhere on my radar before moving to Tennessee. Yet I would not be sitting here today in this beautiful pavilion at the Alafia River State Park in Florida if God had not made me aware of David Lipscomb College. You see it was there (during the first hour on campus) that I met the love of my life, Steve Johnson. (He says I fell in love with him instantly, but that’s not quite how I remember it.) His adventurous spirit has taken me to places that I would have never dreamed of. As a military couple for 23 years, we had 8 moves around the globe, including a 2-year tour in Germany. If you had asked that young teen from Spartanburg what I would be doing 18 years later, I would’ve never guessed living in a foreign country! I thought I needed to stay right there in SC. In fact, the farthest west I had ever been was Memphis. There again, God always knows what’s best!
The military lifestyle brought so many wonderful experiences for us. We have friends scattered all over the country thanks to God and Uncle Sam. Leaving each assignment was always difficult and I always wondered how the next stop could possibly be better. But God graciously looked after us and made each assignment a blessing in its own way. People always ask, “How do you handle all the moving and leaving friends so easily?” My answer is, “I know that right around the corner is another blessing coming my way. “ Do I miss the friends I’ve made at each stop? You better believe it! Just about every day I think of someone I’ve known at some point in my life and wonder how he or she is doing and recall some of the fun times we’ve shared. But then I remind myself that if I had stayed in Spartanburg, SC, just think how many people I would’ve missed out on knowing.
As we start out on this RV adventure, we hope to stop by and see many of those friends that we’ve made and make some new friends along the way as well. We look forward to reconnecting and catching up. I hope that each of you that read this “rambling” will think back on our friendship and look on it as pleasantly as I have. Thank you all for being a part of who I am and for playing a role in my life’s adventure!
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