Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Bitter Sweet

The 20 hour flight across the Atlantic is now just a blur. We've been home for over a week enjoying spending time with wonderful friends and family.

In some ways it feels like so long ago and in other ways it feels like yesterday that I was sitting on my bathroom floor trying to decide what I would need during 6 months in Africa. These decisions were much more difficult than one would think. But, didn't take long in rural Africa to realize I didn't even "need" most of the things I decided to take.

As I reflect on my time in Africa, I'm so humbled by the power of the Holy Spirit. He continually kept us safe and provided a constant sense of security in dangerous times and places. I met some of the most wonderful people from all over the world who have impacted my life forever. I must say the Lord truly blessed us during all of our travels. In total we flew on 14 flights, all of which went smoothly with only minor delays and most importantly no luggage overage charges.

Being at home my prayer is that I will cling to the simplicity of life that Africa reveals. It doesn't take long to come back to the 'west' and get caught up in the materialism and fast paced life style. I'm so thankful to have experienced first hand how different life is in developing countries. It's always so amazing to see how happy people are who have so little.

Now my struggle is with what is next...after all I've seen and experienced, how do i know what's next? where does God want me? where do i want to be? I think these are questions that continually pop up in life. We have to be still and listen to His gentle guidance and we'll be exactly where he wants us.

I came across this quote today, which speaks so much truth.
“You go nowhere by accident.
Wherever you go, God is sending you.
Wherever you are, God has put you there.
Christ, who dwells in you has something
He wants you to do through where you are.
Believe this and go in His grace, love, and power.”
Robert Halverson

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

They say there's no place like home....

They say home is where the heart is. Where is home if your heart is broken into multiple pieces? Is it where the biggest piece is? What if the biggest piece shifts on any given day?
I have never been more in love with God, my family and friends. I have also never missed a community, culture and children the way I miss Tanzania. One weeks ago I was flying over the Atlantic Ocean on my way "home". I was greeted with hugs and a venti Starbucks in a holiday cup (something i am not ashamed to admit that i had missed greatly) at the airport by my loving family. But I'm not sure if I'm home.
I began to think that maybe I will feel home when I have some of my winter clothes and I'm not living out of a suitcase. Maybe I will feel home when i have an answer for "So where are you going to be living","When are you going back to Africa" or "Where are you going to work?" But then I thought maybe for once I feel the way that Christ intended for all of us to feel while here on this earth without him. Maybe home isn't where my earthly heart is at all. Maybe home is where my spirit longs to be. Don't get me wrong it would be a lie if I said that I didn't want to live here on this earth until I got to experience marriage or the miracle of birth or the blessing of adoption. I would be lying if I said that I didn't want to first travel the whole earth and see what He created long ago, but maybe like Paul said 2 Corinthians 5:6" Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord."
but the more I read and thought about the verse I realize that he wasn't just saying that to be with God you have to be in Heaven. Maybe he is saying that you can invite God right now into your everyday. Maybe being away from the body and with the Lord is a spiritual experience not physical. My problem with knowing where home is, is that I have made it circumstantial when it should not be. I was right when I said that maybe how I am feeling is how Christ intended for us all to feel while here on this earth without him. The problem isn't that I'm still on the earth. The problem is that my heart is in so many different places and it's not just in one. It's not just in the palm of my heavenly fathers hand and maybe where my spirit longs to be is with him on this earth learning all he still needs to teach me.
2 Corinthian 5:9 "Therefore, we have as our ambition, whether at home or absent, to be pleasing to Him." - May we all find our home in the loving hand of our Father God.
P.S. - Mom the chicken pot pie last night was amazing & I promise to clean up my room before I leave for Atlanta!