I thought Fellows would be easy. And I was oh, so wrong.

Yep, I said it. And I will admit, I am a bit of an optimistic idealist. Sometimes, I get so lost in my dreams about how I want the world to be, I forget the reality of the way the world is. 

For nine months before I became a fellow, I dreamed. Having never really lived in long-term, Christian community, all I had to rely on were my dreams. I dreamed of the way all 9 fellows would immediately become best friends and love each other all the time. I dreamed of the late night chats and the encouraging words and even holding each other accountable, but I forgot to dream about the hard stuff. I forgot that in the midst of really beautiful community, there would be moments that are not so easy. 

But, I am learning that in these moments, growth happens. I would not have been molded and stretched if I came to Raleigh and these nine months were filled with perfect relationships and flawless experiences. In the imperfections and the flaws, I see the Lord working. 

As I struggle, and I mean STRUGGLE, to learn how to deal with conflict in love, I have learned so much about myself. As I start to see parts of my hearts that are not quite as pretty and put together as I thought, I thank the Lord that He's not finished with me yet. As I yearn to be in deeper relationship with my Father, I know that He is pursuing me daily. 

To put it simply, I have been searching for an easy button. And there is not one. Because the Lord knows that if there was, He would not be able to use the hard stuff to refine us and draw us closer to Himself.


-Carryl T.