Spending time in communion with people, with their families, and with the land reminds me poignantly of the life I am sad to leave. One of my greatest fears is to leave a place “shaking the dust off my feet” and thinking “Thank God, I’m outta here.” Although I know the departure date looms ahead in the future, I try to shape my life in such a way that I focus on the moment in ways I know will eventually make me truly regret and agonize over leaving. And this effort is made by those around me as well… leaving is not easy, and growing attached to people and places makes it even more difficult. Quite simply, caring and loving for those around you makes departure more difficult. But it is a pain worth the effort. The better suffering, as opposed to leaving in isolation and bitterness. The goal, I suppose, is to shape your life in such a way that letting go and leaving is the most difficult path possible. But then, when the time comes for it, release tearfully and gracefully, entrusting whatever you’re letting go of to the care of God.
There is more to u.s. than cheap consumer electronics, shopping malls, and frivolous pursuit of meaningless accumulation, right? There’s more that I take back with me than tablet PCs and MP3 players. Lord let it be so.