Since I’m so fresh off the plane from Germany that I’m still feeling jet lagged, you’re probably thinking this post will be all about my favorite tourist spots, where to eat, where to visit, and what to do, so I hope this doesn’t disappoint you. I’m sure you’re now expecting this to be a post about “10 Reasons Why You Have To Go To Germany”, which I could easily come up with, but it’s not. This post could be all about”How Germany Changed My Life”, but really, I didn’t change that much. Honestly, I didn’t want to change. Am I allowed to say that? This post is all about how and why I remained the same during my trip to a foreign country. Besides, isn’t it okay to be happy with who you are?
I didn’t book my trip to Germany to try to find myself. I found myself when I found Christ and accepted him into my life. And honestly, I think that made my trip that much better. I never once said, “This place has changed me.” God has already changed my life. But, please, don’t get me wrong. I love to go around and marvel at God’s wonderful creation, but it doesn’t change me. God changed me, and now everything I experience is …magnified. I don’t know how else to explain it, but I truly believe that because I know Christ, I have a “Christ lens” and see things more beautifully. It only makes everything that much better. But I know what people mean when they say experiences and places “change” their lives. Instead, I like to use the word grow. I definitely grew on this trip. I grew up a little more. I grew in my relationship with my boyfriend. I even grew in my relationship with Christ as we visited different churches. Growing is changing, but changing isn’t necessarily growing. See what I mean here?
I, also, didn’t book my trip to Germany for a vacation. Although Germany would be a wonderful place to kick your feet up and spend time away from the world. That wasn’t my intention. I went to Germany to meet my wonderful boyfriends family. Now, here’s some advice. Though I do believe it is important to be yourself all the time, and I realize how hard that can be in today’s society with body editing apps, bullying, and so many other insecurities, I can’t stress the importance of being yourself when you meet your significant other’s family. My mom recently told me that meeting the family will either make you or break you. She’s also told me before that when you marry someone, you marry their family. It’s so important to be yourself because 1) You want them to fall in love with the same person your significant other did. 2) You should rather want to be yourself and it break your relationship than be someone fake and it make your relationship. 3) Being yourself is always the easiest and best thing to do. I really felt a lot of pressure from my boyfriend about this topic, too. He told me before we left that it would be hard to have a relationship with me if his family didn’t like me. I knew exactly what he meant, and honestly, I loved that about him. He is a huge family guy, just like I’m a huge family girl. His family was so loving and accepting of me that it was easy to be myself. I didn’t change.
I could go on and on about all of the things I saw, all of the churches, castles, bakeries, and museums we went to, but it would just be wrong. Words and pictures do not do Germany justice. (Here’s my “Go to Germany” rant now.) But really, go out and experience things through your “Christ Lens”. Don’t go out into the world and change, go out into the world and grow! “Besides, isn’t it okay to be happy with who you are?”