Saturday, September 10, 2011

Church Family Sheltering

To us, family means putting your arms around each other and being there. ~Barbara Bush

I am curious. Am I the only one who finds it cruel that the word “hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia” is defined as “the fear of long words”?  I trust you don’t suffer from “Xanthophobia:” The fear of the color yellow or the word yellow. At times I fear that I have acquired “Atychiphobia” (The fear of failure). “Can you really have a fear of a fear?” you may ask. Apparently so. Phobophobia. Thinking about this fear of failure brings me to the final phobia of my word study:  Scholionophobia. As I near a new chapter in my life, my fear of school intensifies with each day. September 6th I began my four year journey at Indiana Wesleyan University.

The weekend before my first day my precious church family held a party in my honor. Two special ladies decorated our educational facility in all things “IWU” and planned some of my favorite foods. I was overwhelmed with gratitude of the gift cards, personalized notebooks, coffee, mugs, book bags, money, and a very helpful-and-hilarious-mock “first-aid kit,” etc. -- all to help make my new experiences a smoother ride.

I don’t know if these wonderful people realize how much they sheltered me beyond their gifts, words of advice—both silly and wise, and pitch in dinner. For 10 years they have been preparing me for this time in my life. Day after day they lived their lives as Christ-like examples for me to follow and learn from. They have helped me grow in my relationship with my Heavenly Father by sheltering me with the love and guidance He illustrates to us. My prayer is that God will bless them for all the time invested in my life. Prayers were offered, smiles and hugs were shared at just the times I needed them most, and encouraging words were always ready to be whispered to me in hours of worry or discouragement.  When I consider all they have done for me, I am reminded of the lyrics: “Thank you for giving to the Lord; I am a life that was changed. Thank you for giving to the Lord; I am so glad you gave.”

* * * * *

College First Aid

WD40: To Loosen Brain Freeze
Chocolate: For extra dose of Vitamin C (chocolate)
Rope: For the times you need to tie a know at the end of a rope and HOLD ON!
Odor Stopping Insoles: For those classes that really stink
Balloons: For all the "hot air" blown around by those "windy" profs
Laffy Taffy: For when you just can't find anything to laugh about
Nuts and Bolts: When you feel like you're going Nuts and all you want to do is BOLT!
Large Clothespin: When you feel like your profs have hung you out to dry
Travel Toothbrush: When you are just scrapin' by, by the skin of your teeth
Fancy Toothpicks: Eyelid props for the "classy" Co-Ed
Acrylic Nails: For when you've worked your fingers to the bone
Sticky Tak: For the times you feel as if you're falling apart
Sandpaper: For when the goin' gets rough
Chill Tic Tacs: For when you need a breath of fresh air
Symphony Candy Bar: For when the iPod battery runs low
Ear Plugs: To filter "Dad-talk" on the 45 minute commute.

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Amy said...

How creative and caring! Blessings to you on this new journey.

Anonymous said...

Oh, how exciting...those days before going back to school!! This was a great post, and a great reminder of how we desperately need the friendship and prayers of others...we are not islands. Thank you for sharing! Much love ~ alice

Tracy said...

Hi Emily - what a lovely post. I pray you always keep Jesus close to you at college and let Him be your everything first aid box
God bless

Haddock said...

small words and gestures go a long way.

Bobbe Brooks-Fischle said...

Abundant blessings--as you enter this new and exciting adventure! (and to your precious family)
LUV the "first aid kit."
Thoughts and prayers from the Rockies, Bobbe

Katharine said...

What a fun, creative, first aid kit! I need to file that one!

Sarah (Nikki) said...

This is so fun and creative. Got to remember some of this when my guys are there....hope your weekend is going great.

Jan said...

How thoughtful of your Church family to celebrate your exciting journey! Love the 1st Aid kit :)

Little Birdie Blessings said...

Hi Emily, Thank you for sharing this post. How wonderful that you have not only the support of your family, but your church family as well. I'm sure they will cover you with prayers, especially these first few weeks as you make the transition.

What a blessing to have so many mentors along the way. ~ Abby

Mindy said...

How exciting! and sweet!

Enjoy all of it!

Ruth said...

What a sweet send-off to college! IWU isn't too far from where I live and I know many friends who have journeyed through that wonderful place. Good choice! God has good things in store for you and some new lifelong friends to love.

Charlotte said...

I have had special recognition and gifts from various churches we have been with through the years. It is always special and made me feel special. I'm glad you received this blessing. Thank you for sharing with us.

Shanda said...

That is so sweet to send you off with such love. I pray this school year is a wonderful experience for you and that you draw closer and closer to God during every step of the way.

Sharon said...

This was great, Emily. What a great group of friends and supporters you have! What a wonderfully blessed *send-off* they gave you.

LOVED the first aid kit contents! Too cute.

Emily, I have a feeling that you're going to be just fine. Pack your Bible, and maybe some knee pads for praying - and never forget - God is with you every step of the way!


Laura said...

How exciting for you, Pamela! And what a sweet gift from your church family--so encouraging. Praying for you in this journey. Can't wait to hear all about it as you go.

Ivy and Elephants said...

What an adorable first aid kit to help add a hint of humor to the college adjustment period!
Best wishes!

❀~Myrna~❀ said...

To have such support is wonderful!
Best wishes to you as you start this new phase of your life !

Shoregirl said...

What a sweet and thought gesture....and CUTE first aid kit!