In January, on our two year anniversary of living and serving here, a deep homesickness hit me—HARD. This was a different kind of homesickness than what I had periodically experienced since leaving the US. There was no frustration at the way things work here, like having to go to five stores before finding salt or flour, or how pickin’ hot it is, etc. No, this was much deeper than that. It was a deep ache, a grief that took me completely by surprise, for missing our family and friends. Those relationships that rooted us, people who had long history with us … and still loved us! Grief for what we had missed in their lives and what they had missed in ours, for relationships that had been stretched thin with time and distance, accompanied with a longing to have those relationships strengthened and renewed face-to-face again.
As the wave of sadness washed over me, the only thing I could do was cry out to the Lord, “Oh God, it’s so long and so far. It’s so long and so far… How can You possibly understand this, Lord?” Immediately He checked my spirit, Oh child, I understand. You think two years is long? Try thirty-three years. And 10,000 miles? Try moving from heaven to earth. Yes, Child, I understand more deeply than you can possibly know. His response quickly corrected my perspective, but also brought peace that He knew and understood my grief. How completely breathtaking that we serve a God who personally understands our struggles and walks with us through them with both compassion and holiness. Hallelujah!