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The Year of Yes {Part 2}

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"Yes, God."

The most terrifyingly, exciting two words I have said this year. When God said yes to me, I said yes in return. For a short phrase, it did lead to one roller coaster ride of a year. 

The Year of Yes has had mountain top moments. There were so many celebrations upon receiving the news that visa sponsorship had been granted and I would be able to stay in England.

But the Year of Yes has also had deep valleys. The months of waiting with my future hanging in the balance trying to figure out if the logistics would even work. That one family phone call that was heartbreaking.

The highs and lows of this year have stretched me and my faith.

Early on in the year, a friend reminded me of the bold faith statements of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in Daniel 3:17-18:
"If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and He will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if He does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we wil…

The Year of Yes {Part 1}

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"Yes."

It was March 2017. I was at an evening my church was holding that was all about the Holy Spirit. I was standing in the corner as the evening wound down; I was waiting, listening.

Then I heard it. I couldn't tell you if was audible or a whisper in my soul, but I was sure I had heard God say the word "yes".

I knew what He was talking about. The church that I was interning for had asked if I would be interested in staying on if they offered me a job. In that moment I was sure that God was telling me that - in spite of all of the impossibilities, difficulties and hurdles we were facing - the church would be granted visa sponsorship status and I would be staying abroad for longer.

That one word gave me a sense of peace and hope that I had desperately been looking for in the midst of a roller coaster ride of a situation (applying for visa sponsorship is not a walk in the park).

"Go and tell them."

That was the next whisper.

I wanted to do anything but share…

When Christmas Looks Different

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In my head, it wasn't supposed to happen like this.

Honestly, when I imagined my first Christmas away from my family, my mind assumed that it would be because I was married and spending it with my husband's family.

Instead, I am half a world away from my parents, still single and restricted by US tax code (it's a long story) from returning to the States until February.

Like I said, it wasn't supposed to happen like this.

After a bit of wrestling with myself I can finally say, I am not entirely ok with the fact that I won't be heading to an airport soon.

My personal version of denial has been going into Christmas overdrive. I did put a 6  foot pre-lit tree in the dormer window in my room. I've been overly (or perhaps just Americanly) enthusiastic about Christmas events. I bought, wrapped and labeled presents from my parents (they did pay); shipping costs a fortune folks, but I did want something under the tree.

It's not all glum. I am excited about experiencing my…

I Had A Dream

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Culture, Citizenship & Hiraeth (Part 2)

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Now we come to hiraeth. It's a Welsh word. You may have seen it on Pinterest with a definition. Or an attempt at a definition. Because actually it has no direct translation into English.

Hiraeth. (n.) a homesickness for a home to which you cannot return, a home which maybe never was; the nostalgia, the yearning, the grief for the lost places of your past.

This week, in the face of much heartache happening among my friends and family in America, I am homesick for the US. But that is not hiraeth. Hiraeth is something so much more. It's knowing that I belong somewhere and wanting to be there but being unable to go because I am not quite sure where there even is. But I yearn, I long, I need to go there.

It is inherent in human nature; we all have it because we were all designed for this home. And this world just can't quite cut it. Somewhere in the past, in the history of humanity we had a home and we can't figure out how to go back to it. But oh, how we want to.

Hiraeth.