It’s been a rough time since we’ve been home. For me, the drive back was long and from the get-go, it seems like one thing after another has piled up. Everything from my aloe vera randomly dying to finding out my Grandma P’s condition has become extremely poor. But the majority of concerns are family-related and it has me asking a lot of questions about how ready I am to be away from them for a year or more.
I’ve always struggled with carrying worry that isn’t necessarily inside my boundary realm, so I’ve been having a hard time feeling guilty about moving away to India. A lot of the thoughts I’ve been wrestling with deal with abandonment: “Am I abandoning my family? Are we abandoning our family? Will I regret not taking advantage of being so close to them in the states?” Eventually, I shift my inward thoughts to God and approach Him with these questions.
So, the Wonderful Counselor listens and we work through it together.
Starting with… Where does my realm of control end and His begin? David says in Psalm 16:6: “The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places…” So I must remember that in all things God helps set healthy and “pleasant” boundaries in my life. Worrying for my family does not affect their situation one way or the other. And it says to God that I do not trust him to preserve their well-being. I cannot add or subtract one hair from my own head by worrying – much less someone else’s head! God loves my family beyond comprehension. Can I tell God how to love them better? Will my worrying do a better job for them than the methods God is presently using?
Then I think: Is “abandon” even an accurate word? It’s not like I own my family. God does. They’re not “mine”. They’re God’s. Only Jesus can truly be held personally responsible for every individual on the face of this planet. Being in Houston may grant me more physical access to my family; but it does not necessarily grant me access to their hearts, cares or concerns. How can I abandon what I never owned?
|Guy walking on glass at River City Market|
Despite these talks, my emotions have been getting ahead of me occasionally, and I still have more to process. But I will say that the last couple days have allowed me to focus on walking this out in the present-tense. I’ve been letting myself just experience the full realm of feelings attached with moving to a foreign place. And it’s been good. It’s almost like I woke up one day and was like, “Oh my gosh. We’re moving to India.” Then I got butterflies. We’re really moving to India. Ok. I can do this.
God is with us and with our family at the same time. And I look to my Savior for an example of how to maintain peace in the midst of my worries. Jesus knew he was responsible for the salvation of the whole world, but he found time to sleep on a boat during a storm and have dinner with sinners and tax collectors. He told his disciples “Do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is it’s own trouble.” (Matt 6:34) He did nothing apart from what He saw the Father doing (Jn 5:19) and was content to do His will.
(Haha.. gosh. If this past year has been anything at all, it’s been one big lesson in contentment. I wonder what I’ve learned?)
I never want to forget that no matter how stressful this transition might get – it’s for a reason and it’s all just apart of the Adventure God has invited us to go on.