Well, I’ve postponed this entry as long as I can. I am going to go ahead and warn you…this might get a little sappy and cheesy. Bear with me (just looked that expression up, ‘bare’ with me would be asking you to undress…)
It is late in the night; actually it is the morning of June 18th. Marking the dreaded one month left. I have many mixed emotions right now. I would love to share with you an incredible mind blowing story that I have experienced. But one story would not give my life the past 4 months justice.
I would love to be able to sum up everything that I have learned in one short entry, but I fear that it may take years for me to figure out and process everything that has happened in my life recently. I have seen friendships formed through struggles, and strengthened through love. I have witnessed an unspeakable grace in my life that I do not deserve. I have seen friends struggle through the loss of loved ones, and I have seen joy that only the One True Love can bring. I have been thrown into fear, only to be rescued through faith in my Dad. I have experienced a love that cannot be typed out, but lived out through my life and those around me. My perception has been upturned. My world has been flipped. And my life will not be the same.
If you were to ask me what I have learned through my time in China, we would need a few pots of coffee and maybe a few red bulls. Actually, I haven’t had a red bull in a while, so that might be a bad idea. I do miss the taste….
These past few months have torn away scab after scab. Literally, I got hit on my scooter and my leg had a scab, I kept peeling it.
Truly though, I have been broken repeatedly, only to find Him waiting for me with open arms. I have read more books in the past 3 months than I have combined in the past 3 years. I finally had to slow down just to be able to comprehend what was going on. I’ve been able to lay in my hammock and not worry about the to-do list I usually have in the back of my head. My schedule has been more flexible than ever.
I have learned to cook (poorly), drive a scooter through Chinese traffic (dangerously), relax relentlessly, and pray ceaselessly (it’s a word, I think?).
I feel a bit like I’m writing an obituary. In a sense, I guess it is. My life in China is coming to a close. At least this chapter is. The door is slowly shutting. But with that, there are uncountable windows that have been opened. My world has been expanded drastically. I have seen His creation, and I want some more baby! I will be honest I am a little nervous to get back to America. I love my country, (some here may think a bit too much), but I do and I ain’t ashamed. I love that red, white, and blue.
Yet, I am still frightened to be thrown back into the land of the free. After living abroad, I have been disconnected from so many distractions. I feel as if my head is on straight. I can focus (maybe not in class) on the things that matter most in this life. And I believe those are my relationships. I hope that coming home will not change that belief, but only strengthen it.
Tangent. T-A-N-G-E-N-T. (Ha oh man) Anywho, there’s this dog right. And somehow he finds his way outside my door. I live on the 18th floor of an apartment complex. So I’m thinkin, alright this dog belongs to someone on my floor. Well, it likes to bark a lot. So on the 2nd night this continued into the wee hours, I took matters into my own hands. I put that sucker in the elevator and sent him to the 1st floor. Guess what?! This dude found its way back up?! The next few nights it kept happening, and I kept sending it down, one time I literally walked it outside and shut the door. Anyways, like a week later a saw a lady with the dog and she said it was hers and she got out of the elevator on the 9th floor. What the heck?
Yes. My life is different. And I pray that it will continue to change. That I will be clay for His hands to mold. Now, I don’t believe this is goodbye, I just felt sentimental tonight, so I decided to jot it down. I hope I didn’t scare you away. Maybe my next one will be peppy and littered with smiley faces and references to Chinese people relieving themselves in public.
But until then, you’re stuck with sappy, emotional, thoughtful, reflecting, cheesy Ben.
This Bird Talkin
P.S. I definitely saw a tiger eat a live chicken at the zoo…doo..do..doooo