the college years. what an amazing time of growth. i don't think anything stretched me as much or had as many ups and downs as those years.
i learned a lot about love. what it means to love your neighbors, your friends, your enemies, god. my faith was challenged in so many ways. did i believe what i believed because that's what i was always told to believe, or did i really know it to be true? the first two years i wasn't going to church. at all. which, if you knew me in high school, was a huge deal. i just could not find a church in that town that met my needs. this is not to say anything bad about any of those churches. i know they are all doing wonderful things to futher the kingdom and improve the community... i just didn't feel challenged at any of them.
but then i went to mac. it blew my mind. it took everything i had ever thought i believed about christianity and flipped it upside down. and then they planted a new church in anderson. the mercy house. i went the second week it started, and never looked back. matt announced that there would be an internship that summer, and i joined. not having any idea what i was getting myself into.
and that's when i learned what community was. we all lived together, in one house. (well, the seven of us girls lived in one house, the five dudes lived in the church). we cooked together. and ate together. and invited anyone who wanted to join us... feeding 30-some people a night. inviting them into our home, into our lives. people from the church, people from campus, people from across the street. we tore down our walls and held no secrets from each other. we let each other into both the joys and the shit of our lives. and i don't think i have ever experienced anything that beautiful.
in the [almost] five (really? FIVE?!?!) years since then, i have lost touch with some of those fellow interns. but others remain near and dear to my heart.
[now here comes the part where i tell you to go check out my good friend and former fellow-intern stacy lantz]