It’s my final day here in Scotland and oddly enough I am not asking the question, “Where has the time gone?” That’s usually how it goes for people at this point in the trip. You’ve been away from home for months, and you lost track of time because of all the things you were doing, and now you’re wondering where it all went. I thought that’s exactly how I would feel by now, but it isn’t so. I think it is a small sign that I am ready to return home. And though this is true, I cannot neglect to recount all the great adventures I have had, all the interesting people I have met, and all the distant places I have had the pleasure experiencing. It’s a strange thought that this time of travel and learning is over. In these 4 months I have had the privilege of visiting Frankfurt, Rome, Florence, Geneva, Paris, Northern Ireland, and almost all of Scotland. And if the Lord has taught me one thing through my time away from home, it’s that no matter where I am, and how unfamiliar the land is, He will always be the same. He is the same even in my doubt and uncertainty. That truth is most reassuring. I trust that I will forever remember the things I have learned through this time.
Scotland really has become a second home for me. I can recall on multiple occasions actually calling this cottage “home”. It’s where we always returned to at the end of the day. Away for the entire day, driving into the wee hours of the night, and returning back home to this cottage exhausted was at times the most satisfying feeling. I’ll miss it, and I’ll think about it often I am certain, but I am ready to say goodbye. I have grown to love this place. I have grown to love it for the way it reminds me of God’s handiwork, for the way it brings me to a state of humility, and for the way it urges me to want to travel more. There are places here that I never thought I would see outside of a photo. It’s amazing really; when you begin to travel you just don’t want to stop. I remember my time in mainland Europe, I just wanted to keep going, and I wanted to see more. There is so much out there to experience, and I never thought I would want to see so much of it. Unique places to visit, and unfamiliar people to meet, I just wanted to be a part of that. And now, at the end of my time here, I am realizing that it is time to return home and I am content with that. I don’t want to go to another country right now, or a distant land. I truly want to return home and see my brothers, sister, parents, nieces and nephews. I want to just sit down on my couch and talk to my siblings about life and what God has taught me. I am ready for that. God has taught me (as stubborn as I have been about it) to be content these past four months. He taught me to be content whether I was in Italy, Germany, a different church, my cottage, or a stranger’s house. It has taken time for me to come into that, but I am finally getting it. And now, I am most content to return home. As I said, I will miss this place, and I will fondly remember it as the days pass by. I hope one day to travel again; to see new lands and far off places, but for now, it is homeward that I journey. I am thankful for the Lord’s steadfastness in my life.