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Monday, October 8, 2012

More Than This Monday

Earlier I was commenting on a blog post when WHACK. It hit me.

I wasn't being as authentic as I thought.

"Authenticity" has been a big buzzword around this blog and my life. God has called me to it.

Overall, I'm a pretty open person so this isn't so hard. Actually a lot of time I have to put more effort into preserving privacy because I can forget some people aren't as open as me.

But then I read a post which brought home the fact that I've been holding back. And this isn't comfortable.

I actually got a ton of new followers this weekend, so welcome, and let me tell you something: I am moving to India. Hopefully in a month and a half.

Thing is, I've never been out of the USA before. And I'm moving to India to get married to a man I've never met in person before.

Yep. Totally serious.

But honestly, I am not at all afraid we won't like each other. Not at all. I am 100% sure about him. Why? Read our love story. 100% sure. Now I get nervous he'll not like my mannerisms and quirks. I've warned him I'm a slob, but wonder if he really believes it. And I totally expect it to be awkward. You weren't there the first tine we talked on webcam. It was RIDICULOUS. I was giggling like I was deranged, kept hiding my face with my hands and hair and I think a napkin? And I fled the room twice, giggling the whole time, because I was so nervous and self conscious. And you know what? Ryan loves me anyway. So yeah, it will probably be awkward, but we can totally get through awkward. We've done it before.

Nor am I worried about not having chemistry. Ryan and I are more concerned about too much chemistry. We want to honor the Lord, and after 2 years of aching for each other from 8,000 miles apart we're nervous about self control when we're an arm's length apart. Which may be TMI, but hey we'd love it if you'd like to pray.

No, I'm not worried about Ryan at all.

It's more the India part.

Now, I again am 100% sure this is God's path for me. No doubts. I mainly am over the moon excited.

But.

I'm also scared.

This is the authenticity part. See, my family is not supportive. And my friends are only sort of. And what WHACKed me earlier was I'm not being authentic with people because I feel like if they know I'm scared they will pounce.

Which probably isn't fair to my loved ones, but then again... I've given them opportunity after opportunity to share in my joy, but I'm met with lackluster platitudes, grunts, demands, and even earnest "don't go"s.

Now, if I felt they were acting out of anything other than fear, I'd take them more seriously. And if they'd given any indication they'd taken this to the Lord, I'd be far more patient. But the Truth is, I'm going because God is sending me. God has not given me a spirit of fear but of power, love, and self-discipline. I can't act in fear and in Christ together. The only place for fear is in the Lord. Which not only means the fear of the Lord (the beginning of all wisdom) but also that when I am afraid I can lay the burden of those fears on Him.

Then I can express those fears to others, but override them with the Truth. That way I am being authentic with God and man, and not living in fear but in Christ.

But when I hide those fears, I am lying. And in Truth, I've been acting in fear of my loved ones. Which seems wrong on so many levels. But I have been craving their support so much, I've been afraid to be authentic. Right now I've been smiling and telling them I have no doubts (which is true) because the confidence creates a waxy surface their doubts and fears can (supposedly) roll off of... but it's not really rolling off my back. My loved one's unsupportiveness makes me feel like I'm chewing rocks. They seem as cruel enemies to me, though I know that is a lie. And it doesn't help that when I try to talk to other friends about they say stuff like "well, can't you see why they're feeling that way?" or even "well, I have reservations too." It makes me feel so alone!

Yes, I understand their fear! And I am, and always have been nothing but empathetic at the sorrow of our parting. But if I was in their shoes, I would take that fear to the Lord. And I know, I know they would find comfort there. I know He is the One who sends me, and He longs to walk them through this too. And then they could lay the burden of their anxieties down on the One who is strong enough to bear it, instead of on me.

Because I ache for their support. I want to feel I can express my own nervousness and fears without them either exploiting them in a vain but painful attempt to get me to change my mind, or without my concerns multiplying their own and torturing them. I do love them.

Which is why I want to cherish our time together before I go... not feel like I'm always bracing myself against them. It hurts. I do love them.

But Christ is enough. And Ryan is waiting (though he starts up with his own anxieties sometimes, till it makes me dizzy.) And India is waiting.

Friends, I am so excited! A thrill goes through me and I can't wait...

Then nerves answer, and I feel the anxiety. Mainly it's fear of change. A little fear of like being targeted by criminals because I'm American. A little fear I won't find friends. A healthy dose of fear my in-laws will hate me. Some fear I'll be a crappy wife.

But mainly joy. And excitement. And eager anticipation.

Like I said, I am 100% sure about Ryan and India.

100% sure and still human.

Now it's your turn. What deep stuff do you have to share with us today?

the Songs on the Way

9 comments:

  1. Dont worry no one will harm you here. And friends come here and see we are waiting for you and already friends

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  2. Wow! That is so neat! You are so brave to follow your path and make this huge change!

    Thanks for linking up with the Weekend Blog Walk! You are the cat's pajamas!

    Jillian
    Hi! It's Jilly

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  3. I´m sorry you´re feeling alone. Having moved to another country I can associate with some of what you´ve said. I remember that my family wasn´t gung ho about my moving abroad, but it helped to sit down and hear their concerns. Some of their concerns were unfounded, and others not, but it helped all of us to sit down and really listen to each other. I urge you to try. Try to remember that they are your family and friends, and that God has placed them in your life for a reason. The Bible has a lot to say about our families, and especially about our parents.

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  4. Hi,

    I'm an American, and have been living in Gurgaon for about two years. I believe this is where you might live? While I don't really ever feel in danger or targeted, you do need to be aware people will assume you're "rich" because frankly, you're white. When at markets they will think you are a tourist and try to charge you a higher price. But you have Ryan and I am sure he will help you navigate these things! Moving here was extremely difficult for me but you definitely get used to the hardships and learn to appreciate the good differences.

    You can join Gurgaon Connection --it's free-- and the best way to connect with other expats. I haven't found the other networking groups to be as useful or they were full of spam. It's also a great resource if you ever need to find out anything (like where to get your computer fixed, FRO/Visa issues, Dr. recommendations, where to get canned pumpkin around Thanksgiving, etc.). They also have subgroups such as Book Club, Bible Study, and so on. There's a coffee morning every Wednesday (and a free coffee morning once a month) and is a great way to meet people.

    I wish you and Ryan the very best!

    -L

    p.s. Gurgaon Connection Website: http://www.gurgaonconnection.com

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  5. You say two things that really jumped out at me.

    First was: "Now, if I felt they were acting out of anything other than fear, I'd take them more seriously. And if they'd given any indication they'd taken this to the Lord, I'd be far more patient."

    And second was: "But if I was in their shoes, I would take that fear to the Lord. And I know, I know they would find comfort there."

    Now, from what I have read, many of your friends are deeply religious. Why wouldn't you think they have taken this to the Lord? Why do you automatically assume they never pray for you, about you, or ask for strength in order to support you?

    What if their part in all this is based on God's word to them, and they do have a part in this? What if their fears are meant to instruct you in areas you need to prepare? Have you asked what their *specific* fears were, and investigated them? Addressed them head on? Found solutions to them? Have you considered they may be YOUR deep-rooted fears and they have merely been called to voice them out loud, like a mirror to yourself, so you can proceed into this great, life-changing adventure with strength?

    Please understand I am not saying you should give it all up and stay "home." I am also an immigrant and have stood in your very shoes myself. I really do get where you are coming from. But I am saying perhaps His Message is bigger and louder than you at this moment realize. Maybe the "fear" you hear is actually the sound of "love", sadly altered by imperfect human lips desperately trying to convey His Perfect Word?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hey Tuppence.

    It's more my family, not my friends, and mainly my parents. My mom hasn't been to church since the spring, and my dad hasn't for years. They both believe in Christ, but I see no evidence they are relying on Him in this.

    My friends have a few normal concerns, but mainly are supportive.

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  8. Ok, I see then. I read it as right across the board for everyone. I know (well, not personally, but from following your blog) your parents don't attend church nor pray regularly, so now what you wrote makes sense and is completely understandable (that you wish they would turn to Him more, not that they are unsupportive).

    I do appreciate you reading what I wrote and responding. Thank you! While we have slightly different beliefs, we are both still Christians. I hoped you didn't take my comment as a lecture, but more of a thought born out of my experience and your words. So thank you for that too. Like I said, I have been in your shoes- so if you ever want to chat feel free to email me! :)

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  9. Having lived in India for 6 years now, it still takes a lot of getting used to. But, you just have to have patience...lots of it! And speaking the local language will help, tremendously. Have you seen the place you'll be living in?

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Thanks so much for comments, they delight me! Please keep your comments civil and while I read every comment, I reserve the right to delete ones that are especially negative. Thanks!

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