I’m tired of being that girl still talking about transition, but it’s all I can think about when I think of the word “change.” So much has changed for me and my family in the past year and few months: the food we eat, the language we speak outside of our home, the holidays observed by the culture around us (it’s Chinese New Year and I’m not getting 2 weeks off?! But there are flags lining the street and the bank is closed for President’s Day…what are these holidays?!).
I’m no longer converting prices back to Chinese RMB to figure out if they’re a good deal or not, we haven’t been on an airplane or even in an airport in over a year, I’m not grumpy and cold in February, the boys play basketball instead of soccer, and they ride in the car with Daddy to school instead of a big charter bus filled with kids from around the world. I have a job outside of my home (hallelujah!). I’m no longer battling anxiety (was it caused by the crowds, the loud noises or the cold? I don’t know, but I’m glad it’s gone!)
Not only have my circumstances and environment changed, my perspectives have changed as well. Alarmingly, since being back in America, my perspective on wealth has changed for the worse. We have TWO cars sitting in the driveway, and we’re living in a single-family dwelling, yet I catch myself thinking of myself as not that well off. What in the world?! In China, if you have two cars and a house, you are RICH.
Like a healthy perspective, there are some things I do not want to change, and it can truly be a struggle to continue to hold on to the global awareness that I took for granted when I lived the expat life. I’m wondering where else my perspective has changed and hoping I can continue to stay connected to the great big world that lies outside of my own borders, so I can continually progress toward healthy perspectives.
As I voice my weariness of being the “transition girl” fighting to keep my eyes on the things that matter in life, I’m reminded that we’re all faced with change no matter where we may go on God’s green Earth! I’m thinking of those of us who have recently returned to our home cultures and are finding ourselves changed while attempting to understand the familiar place around us that seems to have changed, too. Then there are those who have just arrived on our overseas assignment and feel as if the world has been turned upside down as we learn to adapt to the new culture we’re living in.
Change is a constant. Doesn’t that sound funny? Our bodies are always changing, our kids are always changing, the weather is always changing, and our circumstances can change in the blink of an eye. Why are most of us so afraid of change, yet change is the thing we need? What in the world keeps our lives in balance?! The answer: our God is a solid rock. Never changing, always there for us! What a relief to look up from the chaos and remember He’s got it all under control!
“And He is before all things and in Him all things hold together.” Colossians 1:17
When you’re tired and confused and feel like you might lose your ever-loving mind if one more thing in your life changes, take comfort in knowing that God’s unchanging love will see you through.
How have you or your circumstances changed in the past year? Have the changes been healthy or alarming? How can we check our perspectives to make sure we’re changing for the better?