Go Big or Go Home

Hello World!

I just wanna go home.

No, let me explain. The phrase “Go Big or Go Home” is meant for you to pursue your dreams and became famous and well-known in your field or go home depressed. I think that following your dreams is not wrong, but I think we all need to take a new perspective on this phrase. Going home shouldn’t be the end of the journey, a fall from grace. Going home is part of the journey, a fall back to grace.

I’m laughing off my many assignments and enjoying the moment.
Photo credit: Joanne Nguyen

I’m taking a hint from The Parable of the Prodigal Son. In Luke 15:11-32, Jesus tells a parable about two sons. The younger son asks his father for his inheritance and leaves home, squandering it. When he lost all of his money, he goes to work as a hired man, feeding the swine. While feeding the swine, he realizes that since his father was feeding his hired workers and he was not receiving any food while famine struck. The younger son goes back to his father and says that he’s sinned against Heaven and against his father, and that he no longer deserves to be called his son. But his father welcomes back with open arms. He gives him a new robe, a new ring and slaughters the fattened calf and has a party. The older son stays with the father the entire time, and is upset when his father has a party for his son. The father emphasizes that everything that he has is the older son’s, but he must rejoice because the younger son was lost and has been found.

So what does that mean for me? I’ll be graduating very soon from the University of Texas at Austin. I don’t know where I’ll go after that. I usually say Austin or Houston, depending on what’s available. I’ll get back to that.

I began my studies in the School of Architecture, and after transferring to Civil Engineering, I will be receiving a minor in Architectural Studies.
Photo credit: Joanne Nguyen

I’ve been on a journey of my own, from going to a school that’s far from my home of Houston. I’ve lived in Houston for most of my life, and transitioning was very scary. I wanted to be involved with my church, and take my school-work seriously. I knew that architecture school was going to be challenging. What I didn’t know was I was not made for architecture school. I had to drop my studio class and transfer to the Cockrell School of Engineering. It took a while as I didn’t get in until the end of my second year because changing your major takes a lot of basic credit hours to complete, and architecture doesn’t let to you take many initially. Despite all of this, I will finally be getting a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. I will be minoring in Architectural Studies. This route has taken me through many classes that I love and more suits my skills and talents. I found a home in my studies because I found what I enjoy and a feasible career that allows me to help construct the world around me.

Civil Engineering, or “Civilization Engineering” as I consider it focuses on the infrastructure of civilization. I enjoy learning about engineering and applying it as a service to the world. I will be receiving the Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering.
Photo credit: Joanne Nguyen

Faith-wise, I’ve been on a different journey. I didn’t want a lot of commitment to my faith because I thought it would conflict with my coursework. I want to be involved, but I also didn’t want to lose time from working on my models and school work. God works in funny ways. I went from just going to Mass to be involved in bible studies, retreats, and organizations that put on retreats, to name a few of the things I do. Prayer is very important to me, as it is necessary to live life in communion with God. It also has integrated into my studies, as making my studies more like an act of service and prayer. My career is me using my talents to help serve others and build the kingdom of God.

I found a community at the University Catholic Center that is more than just a church, (even though it looks like an office building.) I believe that the Mystical Body of Christ is present in the Mass, where we are united in the sacrifice of the Eucharist and that we build a Eucharistic community based on God’s love. This community here has made this place home.

The University Catholic Center is more than just a home parish, it’s my home. It is where I have found friends that have been part of the community. It is also where I find God, present in the Eucharist and in the Mystical Body of Christ of the community.
Photo credit: Joanne Nguyen

Home is more than just a building. It’s where I find my friends and my family. I am connected to everyone in the entire Catholic church. I find my Home in God. I know that in Him alone, I am truly satisfied. I see flashbacks of memories of joy and happiness in certain places, with people I love and who love me just as I am. It’s quite beautiful to be home in those moments.

I went big, but instead of either becoming famous or well-known, I found a home here. It’s so hard to leave this place. When I initially wanted to pursue a career, I preferred Austin because I didn’t want to go back home and become stagnant. I thought that since I might be the only child with a chance to be on my own, I could be on my own.

Trying to look into the light and future beyond.
Photo credit: Joanne Nguyen

I was wrong. God has been telling me to go home. What does that mean? Well, my family back in Houston still needs me. Though it’s a crazy life back home with my family, they need a faith center. But then, I have a home here in Austin. I don’t want to leave, but I know I have to sometime soon. So, I’m at a bit of an unknown territory. I trust in the Lord that he will lead me home whenever I go. So that’s why I say Austin or Houston, because they’re both home. Either way, I can still go home to my parent’s house pretty often. Really, I found a place where I find God and can bring His love to others. I hope when I go to my eternal home in Heaven, I can be satisfied because it will be just like wherever home was back on Earth, but better. Home is me serving God and the community brought together in the Mystical Body of Christ.

It is not the the saying “Go Big or Go Home.” A better saying is “Home is where the Heart is.” If my heart is with God, He is leading me home to where He is, in the church, the community, wherever it may be. I am going home.

Photo credit: Joanne Nguyen


The Nerd of May

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