A year ago I was handed a note card. After a weekend of Discernment, Interviews, and Deep Conversation, I was asked to write down one of two countries I was feeling called to and why. I was asked to write my feelings and hopes for the future and how I was feeling called to this place. A 3x5 note card had never seemed so important to me before.
This weekend, as the new YAGM volunteers gathered in that same place, experienced similar things, and began to think about their own notecards I sat in Tawau, Sabah, Malaysia with a close friend and colleague talking about these very notecards. How important they were, how we walked around with them as if we had the golden ticket in our pockets, but also how much of a stress they were as they held so much potential that was literally right in our hands.
And as I reflect on my notecard, I realize that I had no idea how beautiful this all could be. I had no idea that as scary and wonderful and exciting that notecard was, it's absolutely nothing compared to this place, to these people, to this food, and to this life experience. I had no idea how comfortable I could be in this place. That it wouldn't be a long visit while working to improve some place, but rather a new way of living life, finding home, and working to improve myself.
So today I decided to write a new note card. However, as I sat down with my pen and 3x5, ready to make my checklist of hopes and dreams I came to a wall. I can no longer try and put these places, feelings, and people into words. I'm so much further and deeper then anything that note card I wrote a year ago could even fathom, but I'm not ready to start a new one. This place has become my home, these people have become my family, and I have realized that that "golden ticket" that I held one year ago has blurred into the edge of my current life as everything else around me sharpens into focus.
To the future YAGMs, congratulations! You have the world ahead of you (literally), and I guarantee that in the coming months that you will learn and experience things that each of your note cards could not even imagine. You're in the ride of a lifetime, so hold on tight my friends :)