Castine sliderThis semester has gone by so fast.  We have been blessed with great travels, great teachings, but more importantly great friendships.  The four of us girls came here as strangers and now leave as friends.  Not only have we become good friends with one another, but also the people of the Airdrie church, as well as the larger church of Scotland and Northern Ireland.  The saddest part of leaving is saying goodbye to the friends we made here.  Some of whom we will never see again, and others not for a long time.  I take hope in the fact that eventually we will see one another again in Christ.  These bonds we have made here have been a great influence in my walk of faith.  This congregation has invested so much time and care into each of us, whether it is through people being hospitable or simply asking us about our week.  I realize they do this not only out of love for us, but more importantly out of love for God. “Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from your heart” from I Peter 1:22 comes to mind when I think of the Airdrie hospitality.  Faith and love of Christ is the heart of the congregation here, and it shows to the fullest extent.  We were always amazed and grateful at how people were willing to go out of their way to take care of us and make us comfortable.  I just want to thank all of you who invested in us while we were staying with you.  You all have been a light for Christ in my life and have been a joy to get to know.  Continue strong in your walks of faith, and know I will be praying for you and thanking God for you.

When I first arrived in Scotland, I had felt that I had plateaued in my faith.  I knew I had more to learn, and I always will, but I felt stuck in how to grow.  The first few weeks of class were reviving and exciting.  I was hearing things I had heard and known since a child, but in a new and tangible way.  We were reminded that our goal in life is to pursue holiness, and to obtain that is to become more Christ-like.  This program builds you up that you may have the Word written and stored in your heart and an understanding of how to approach and learn all you can from His Word.  This semester gave me an arsenal of books that I had lacked to assist me in my walk of faith, as well as new tools and insight in how to read my Bible.  We have read book after book of ways to do this and why we should be transforming ourselves to His image daily.  God used my time here to breathe new life into my faith and to strengthen and push me in my personal walk.  This semester has reminded me to be constantly reorienting my life to Christ and what is in His Word.  For our last group devotion, we discussed 1 Peter 1: 13-25.  This was just another example of what we had been learning all semester.  To be holy, not conforming to the world, but instead to the Word of God and into His likeness.  We are called to “Be holy, for I am holy”.  And this will be what I take with me from this experience, to be an imitator of Christ, and show His love to everyone around me.  To be diligent in my seeking Him, and to never be satisfied with my desire to understand His Word, but always want more.