Friday, August 15, 2008

The End of an Era...

My small group girls are starting high school next week. I mean, what happened? Just yesterday they were in sixth grade...and shy...and sweet. Just kidding on that last one, they are still sweet, for the most part. It really is crazy to think that about three years ago, I walked into the Lake Highlands cafeteria and met four little sixth graders who would become such a huge part of my life. Serving with these girls the last three years has been amazing. Here are some things I've gotten to do:

  • Gone to New Orleans twice during the relief efforts and watch a group of junior high kids learn to serve those less fortunate;

  • Been to three Pine Cove retreats;

  • Three Progressive Riots (an overnight "lock out" - not what I would call a highlight of our time together);

  • Witnessed three of the girls get baptized;

  • Learned to sleep on a floor, a couch, a broken arcade roller coaster simulator, and more bus seats than I can count;

  • And most importantly, learned the junior high girls aren't as bad as people make them out to be.
I have watched the girls grow and change into more than little girls. They constantly blow my expectations of them out of the water. Not to say that they are perfect, because they most certainly aren't, but they are amazing. They challenge me to walk closer with the Lord.

Not to say that I'm not glad we are moving to high school, but the last three years will always remain near and dear to my heart. These years have been so marked by growth and change in my own life that I will always remember this time when I was "growing up" with them. I am SO excited to see what these next four years hold for us. I know the girls certainly hope it involves me getting married...they never let me forget that I am still single :) But genuinely, I hope to be able to say at the end of their high school career, that through our time together they've become equipped to go out and disciple others. That they will have a solid foundation to go off to college and make a difference. That is my prayer for the next four years.

I'll leave you with a picture taken our in our first semester together...two original four girls. And one with six of the seven of them at our end of the year party in May. OH my, how they've grown!!


erin said...

Pretty new blog design! And you inspire me, Miss Welch - thank you for being so wonderful. Study hard, only a week to go!

emmysue said...

Girl...if they've spent that much time with you, they will definitely be ready to go out and disciple others! Love ya!

Brooke said...

Proud of the ways you serve with those little are an encouragement to me!