We've been back home in the States for a little over a week and it still feels like we're on holiday (oh, I mean vacation - I need to quit using phrases like toilet instead of restroom and cheers instead of thank you). I don't think our move and transition has quite sunk in. I'm not sure if that's something that happens overnight or if just gradually occurs over time. I'm guessing the latter, but we'll just have to wait and see.
We spent the 4th of July weekend with Juli's family in Oklahoma and then made our way down to the ATX (Austin, TX) a couple of days ago. We're presently enjoying time with our dear friends and former colleagues, Roger and Mary Beth McCown and the larger Brentwood Oaks Church of Christ family. These people in Austin mean so much to us and we are forever in their debt for all they've done for us the past 13 years.
I've worn my emotions on my sleeve a little more than I typically do the past few weeks and I'm sure that will continue for the next few as I continue to process all that I've witnessed God do in the lives of our loved ones back in Ireland. Our family has forever been changed for the better by our experiences these past 5 years. I can confidently say that the last 5 years of my life have been both the best and some of the hardest. It's been a half decade I'll never forget. But we're looking forward to the next chapter in our lives as well. We are certain that it was time for us to return home and we want to continue to love Jesus, follow him, and share his love with those around us wherever God leads us next.
One thing I've been reminded of since 2010 is that God always sojourns with his people. In fact, the Biblical narrative is one of an unsettled people journeying home. So whether our sojourns include literal journeys, or just the metaphorical kinds, we can be certain that as Jesus promised us, he will never leave us or forsake us. He'll go with us to the very end of the age. - Shay