Next week I’ll be heading back up the mountain for Covenant’s homecoming. It’s my 10 year class reunion and the first time I’ll have been back up the mountain since I graduated. For the longest time I never really had a desire to go back, I think because even though I loved my time there and it helped shape me into the person I am today, by the time I graduated the Covenant bubble had started feeling like a too-small echo chamber. I needed time and distance and the haze of nostalgia to soften the edges of my emotions.
Covenant was my home for four years. My professors influenced my thinking in so many ways, something I’ve been reminded of this semester as my Social Justice Lawyering class keeps covering territory made familiar during my time at Covenant. That emphasis on justice that I picked up there, from classes to chapel to student clubs, is something that I’ve since realized is unique for conservative Christian colleges. Some day I’m going to write more on that. Also, oddly enough, given the stereotypes about conservative Christian schools, the longer I’m at UF the more I appreciate just how much Covenant fostered an environment where differences and oddities were celebrated. UF feels constraining in comparison.
As I think about heading back for homecoming, I’m excited, but I’m also more than a little bit nervous. For as much as I say that Covenant made me who I am, teaching me how to let my faith influence all of my life, I’m not the same person I was when I graduated ten year ago. So much has changed in my life, I’ve changed so much, and while Covenant set me on this path I had no idea a decade ago I’d end up where I am today.
It’s going to be an interesting weekend.
Photo Credit: SeeMidTN.com (aka Brent), Creative Commons license, some rights reserved