Thursday, September 29, 2011

Not really alone...

I went to an Alpha course session today. The friends we are living with go and aunty suggested that it would be good for me to go too. It was. Community is so essential in our lives. There is such a deep sense of loss when we're so far away from home, and family, friends, and everything that was familiar and comfortable to us. And now, as aliens, and foreigners, and the outsiders... we go through so many different emotions, so many moments of deep despair and loneliness.
As I sat at the table I was assigned to, and met people, and sang, I was reminded of how FANTASTIC the Body of Christ is! Here I was, halfway across the world, and I was welcomed and greeted, fed, smiled at, spoken to... just because I was there, and I believed in the same God. And all of a sudden we were community. We were travelers on the journey. We shared something in common. Jesus. And that was enough.

And then there was the rainbow

I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth.
 - Gen 9:13

I was really getting down and depressed. That can happen to you in a foreign country by the way. A lot! So if you're doing what we are doing... be prepared for it! Or not. 
Anyway, so I was standing on the balcony of our friends home and looking out rather gloomily at the sky. It had been raining. And the sky was grey and cloudy and then... I saw the rainbow. :) And I remembered the first rainbow, and the covenant God made with the earth. And the covenant God made with people. And I remembered that God is. And always will be. And God loves. And always will. And God has got me... in the palm of His hands. And always will.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Where is home?

We've been apartment hunting and its not easy on a student budget. So many things to consider when you look for a place here - rent, how far it is from school/work, whats the neighborhood like, are grocery stores etc close by, does rent include utilities and hydro, are renters willing to accept a co-signor, will they give you an apartment if you're not employed yet.... Been crazy!
When we traveled to come here, through baggage check and immigration and all of it, we felt that it was just the right time for us. Like God was opening doors and letting us pass. At the airport as we waited for our baggage... ABBA's Dancing Queen played and I was so happy! :) Just felt like things were working out for us... for me.
So, I want to remember those moments when I get down because we can't find something that works for us. When I worry about my job and resources etc. I want to remember that God brought us here. And He will take care of us. He already prepared two homes that took us in and provided for us these past two weeks. He must have something for us... somewhere where we can lay our heads and call home.

Monday, September 19, 2011

And now we are here...

And now we are here on the other side of the ocean. So far away from what we called home, and family, and friends and everything that was familiar and that we understood. Now we must learn new things, new words and meanings, and street names. Now we must  smell new smells and taste new tastes and meet new people. Now we have different mountains to climb and different questions to ask and different tears to cry. Even we are different. Even we don't seem familiar. Everything is strange, everything is new, everything is not what it used to be.
Still, there are old friends and old stories, new friends and new grace, messages and emails and memories of what was. So it is good. It is good. 

Thursday, September 1, 2011

"Dear God"

We're moving. For a couple of years at least. So I have been packing and clearing and pulling things down and finding things whose existence I had long forgotten. Scarves from my childhood, journals, birthday cards, play scripts for church... so many different things. I decided to do away with my journals but I have to say that it made me think about some things. You see, I have been writing my prayers down for about 13 years or so... maybe longer. I started with Dear Diary when I was younger and somewhere along the line it became Dear God and never went back! I've never thought I had much of a prayer life but I just tore about 9 journals and still have about 3 to go... and they were all prayer.

I suddenly realized last night that I have spend time in prayer so to speak. Sure it's not day in and day out and there are breaks but... its pages and pages of prayer.

This move has been very interesting for me and I want to put it down so I won't forget. Its in my prayers but someday, 5/10 years from now, I may have to tear up those pages. So maybe some of what is important should go up here.

As I tore those journals I realized that I have spent a great deal of time searching... in my own confused, deranged way... full of frustration and tears and torn sheets... but all of those years have made me who I am now. I must not  forget that the present has come from many years of struggle and grace and love. I am grateful for life now. So much has happened in 31 years. If we took the time to remember all our experiences, our joys, our failures, our family, our friends, our dogs, the places we have been to, the people we have met, the things we learned, the food we have eaten, the tastes, the smells, the feeling, the beauty, the pain, the tears, the laughter... what can we say about our lives? But that it has been abundant. Yes, that is what it has been. Abundant life.