Tuesday, September 20, 2016

A new chapter

So, here we are. Finding a new normal in between middle of the night feedings and getting used to
owning a car again. Two big transitions in the span of two months. Back in May, after a whirlwind six weeks of selling furniture and saying goodbye to dear friends that had become family, we packed up all we own into our well traveled suitcases and flew the opposite direction over the Pacific to move our family back to Washington State. And then, as if a huge international move was not enough transition, five weeks later we welcomed our son, Reece Henry, into our lives. Like I said, we are finding a new normal. Trying, grasping, hoping, struggling, living, finding, and becoming a new normal. 

How do you sum up four years lived in another culture? How do you process the countless lives you became part of and the friends you still dearly miss? How do you ever eat Chinese food again? 

When I first returned Stateside over four months ago, I received comments such as, "I bet you are glad to be back." This was, and still is, a hard question to answer. Because I am glad. I am thankful God was gracious and allowed me to have my son in the States. I am thankful family is here to support us and be part of my children's lives. I appreciate the efficiency of America and being able to communicate in my first language. But I am also sad. I miss China. I miss my friends and church community. I miss our amazing Ayi. I miss the convenience of living in a city where fresh fruit and vegetable stands dot the sidewalk. I miss the freedom of my scooter.

It is hard to see the forest for the trees sometimes. Big changes like this usually prompt a questioning of what God is doing and why it all happened so fast. I still can't believe we have already been Stateside for four months. However, we see His fingerprints all over this move. We sensed the changes coming, so when circumstances drastically changed we were able to confidently approach God and see where He was leading us (of course, not before we did a little freaking out and others graciously directed our attention to the obvious). 

And so, here we find ourselves. Steven started a new job on September 1st with our home church as the Executive Pastor, we bought a new-to-us car (yay for mini vans!), and we are starting the process of looking for a house in the Tri Cities area. New beginnings, exciting changes, but we serve the same God. He knew what we needed before we needed it and He hasn't changed, even if our new normal has. And I am so grateful for that. 

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.
James 1:17