Due to my realization of not putting this info online yet (sorry!), and partly due to some speculation and false information floating out there, here is an important update:
I have returned to Minnesota to stay.
I left the house for South Carolina on July 7 and came back August 3. It wasn’t a long time to live down there, but it was an immensely profitable time. A time I wouldn’t trade for anything.
While living there I learned much about prayer and the importance of making a relationship with God my first priority (which can be hard when focusing on learning to be independent). The church I attended was a wonderful blessing, and the lady I lived with was more than gracious at all times. I had (have) so many reasons to be thankful for my situations there.
So, why did I leave? I have one primary reason, among other personal reasons.
I could have decided to stay longer, eventually find a solid job, spend the money at my school of choice, and live my life. I’m fully aware of every little thing I could have done differently. I spent countless hours thinking and praying.
At no point in this process did I ever once forget about the provision of God and His faithfulness. He moved in the hearts of my church family to provide me with the finances and support to go down there in the first place. That was an immense blessing, and coming home after receiving such a gift was an extremely hard call to make. To those of you who gave, I want you to know that your gifts were not given in vain. They supported me in a time of transition, enabled me to move to an area where I was able to stop and think and pray about where I was in life, and blessed me with the knowledge of friends and family who truly loved me and would always support me.
And to those who might think my decision was unwise and unruly, please know three things:
1) My timing is not perfect.
2) My decisions are not perfect.
3) My life is not my own.
God is not done with me. He’s still growing and changing me day by day. If this decision was a mistake, then I should have stayed. But I do not believe this decision was a mistake. Do I have a long list of solid, practical reasons for returning? Not really, no. Did I feel that making this decision was the right thing to do for me right now? Absolutely. I would not have made the choice to return if I felt it to be the wrong thing to do.
Even so, I know I’m a person who changes a lot, has a million different desires and ideas and likes to try them all. I know that I can grow in the area of stick-to-it-iveness and decision-making. This situation has made me realize that in more ways than I ever have before.
My highest desire is not to try to convince you that this decision was right, but to respond biblically to the outcome. The decision is made, I am learning many lessons from it, and it has resulted in a closer walk with God than I had before I left. To me, that relationship means more than any dollar sign or mile marker. It means more than my own life.
My life belongs to the Lord, and I am trying my best to follow His will, loving the fact that I am His child every step or turn or leap of the way.