From my journal:
March 26, 2011
“The L [elevated subway in Chicago] is going by. The windows catch the sunlight and toss it back into our apartment. The other night the sun was setting on the other side of the train and presented a light show with the beams dancing in through our kitchen as the train slowed to a stop.
Lord, I pray for freedom to live my life fully here. I still feel major guilt in leaving China and especially in being so bad about keeping up with my good friends there. My defense mechanism has been to just cut everyone off so I won’t be reminded of China. But I know that’s not healthy. Help me Jesus.
Help me to know how to allow China to stay with me and be a part of my identity and yet still live fully here in America.
Break my heart for the people all around me and give me chances to speak Truth to them. Show me how to be a missionary in my own country.
Help me to listen to your Holy Spirit and give me a greater sensitivity to Him whispering to me on the lake path, in our car on my way to work, through the aisles of the produce store, on our couch in our tiny condo and in the halls of school.
You have not changed. You are the same yesterday, today and forever. And You will be with me until the end of the age.
Lately, I feel like I’m just full of tangled up string or rubber bands–like the inside of a baseball. My emotions are so tangled that it seems impossible to bring order to them all.
Forgive me for trying to do life on my own.”
If you are in the midst of your re-entry, how would you describe your feelings? Do any word pictures come to mind?
This post is day 29 of the series “Re-entry: Reflections on Reverse Culture Shock,” a challenge I have taken to write for 31 days. Check out my other posts in the series:
Day 1: Introduction
Day 2: Grieving
Day 3: No One Is Special
Day 4: Wasted Gifts
Day 5: I Never Expected…
Day 6: Identity: Through the Looking Glass
Day 7: Did I mishear God?
Day 8: When You Feel Like Shutting Down
Day 9: Caring for your Dorothy
Day 10: You’re Not the Only One Who’s Changed
Day 11: 12 Race Day Lessons for Serving Overseas
Day 12: Confessions of an Experience Junkie
Day 13: Longing for Home
Day 14: Readjusting: Same Tools, Different Work Space
Day 15: Book Review: The Art of Coming Home
Day 16: The Story of My “Call”
Day 17: Is Missions a “Higher Calling”?
Day 18: And Then I Fell in Love
Day 19: Is God Calling You Overseas?
Day 20: Life Is Not Seasonal
Day 21: What I Took and What I Left Behind
Day 22: Groundless, Weightless, Homeless
Day 23: When the Nations Come to You
Day 24: The Call to Displacement
Day 25: Scripture Anchors for Re-Entry
Day 26: In the Place of Your Exile
Day 27: Resources for Re-entry
Day 28: A Time for Everything: A Prayer of Leaving
Day 29: Journal: 8 Months After Re-Entry
Day 30: 12 Survival Tips for Re-Entry
Day 31: A Blessing
(Day 32: Writing is Narcissistic (And Four Other Reasons Not to Write)–a reflection on this Write 31 Days experience)
Photo: By Lewis Ronald (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons