It's 1:46pm and I just got home from work about 45 minutes ago and had lunch. Right now, being so soon after the conference, my heart aches because I miss everyone. I keep replaying everything in my mind. Waiting outside for Jamie and Ryan with my suitcase stacked on top of my car, with my Bible and other books I had borrowed from them. Seeing them pull in my driveway out of the corner of my eye, feeling that rush of excitement you get when you see those you love after being away from them for a long time. The drive to Atlanta, the stop at Zaxby's, arriving in Atlanta and catching my first glimpse at the Sheraton Suites hotel where the conference was. It's all so special. I love running the thoughts through my mind, sucking on them like candy. Ugh.
Hearing the alarm go off in the room Joel and I were staying in, hearing his blankets ruffle as he got up to shower. I saw him get up out of bed out of the corner of my eye, thinking how strange and great it was to know it was Joel. I had been up since before the alarm went off, staring out of the big living room window, looking at the big building across the street with the pretty lights. I was anticipating the day.
Having breakfast with the gang all there. Coffee, eggs, sausage, bacon. Need I say more? It was like one big family in one big house. We came down for breakfast only to find all the other brothers and sisters who were there for the conference, chatting and eating and laughing. At one point during breakfast I glanced behind my shoulder to see Steve McVey with morning eyes, laughing and talking with some friends. It was the best home ever. Everyone understood who God is. No one was seeking to bring anyone into slavery. They were thirsty. Not for tips on behavior, but for the living God. They wanted to know him. There was some deeper craving telling them what they had been taught was just not enough. Something was missing. Learning about behavior just wasn't enough for them. They wanted something deeper. And with full bellies, we would go up to the conference room with hungry Spirits.
I miss everyone a lot. The sweetest, but the most bitter time to think on these things is in the morning before work and when I'm home alone and everything is quiet again.