Missing Home

Life abroad can be stressful. It isn’t just dealing with things in a foreign culture or a foreign language that is challenging. It’s hard when you ‘miss’ things that you feel you should be ‘home’ for.

Missing Celebrations

I have grown accustomed to missing family birthdays, get-togethers and general celebrations. That goes with the territory of being a missionary. It was more difficult in the beginning, but now I have reconciled myself to the fact that I have to be satisfied with an internet greeting. Actually, if I compare this experience to the missionaries of old who relied solely on snail mail, I can say I am blessed. I love the fact that I can chat on Facebook or some other social media platform and almost immediately get a reply. I enjoy seeing my loved ones on Skype even if the bandwidth is low and I see a pixelated version of them. I know I have to make an effort though, to reach out, to help others feel connected to us. I especially appreciate it when they reach out to me. It tells me they haven’t forgotten me; I am still important to them!

Missing Supporting

There are some things I still really struggle to deal with. When I heard the news that my brother had been in a particularly bad rugby accident, it was horrible. He needed neck surgery to fuse the vertebrae together. There was that all too familiar tug to go back home, to be there, to help and yet a feeling of helplessness when I realised that it wouldn’t be possible to make the trip.

Missing Spontaneity

Our decisions aren’t as easy as just looking up the times of the next flight. Tight budgets already straining at the seams do not allow that sort of spontaneity and in all honesty that brings a feeling of vulnerability.  It’s at times like these that I don’t handle the distance well. It’s okay to admit that you aren’t happy with a situation, sometimes it just doesn’t seem fair. At times like these, I focus on the things I can be thankful for.

But… Not Missing Out on Blessing

I am glad that prayer is not something that is restricted because we are at a distance. I am grateful that we have a telephone and the internet. I am blessed that we have family we care about and who care about us. However, that doesn’t ease the ache that sometimes hits the heart at times like these.

What do you find difficult to handle about the distance? Share your answer on Facebook, or Twitter. #handlingthedistance

Bringing Worlds Together Book

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