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Friday, August 22, 2008

Thoughts on Re-entry...

Hello faithful readers -
It has been 3 weeks since I have been home and have re-entered my life as I once knew it. I have to say I knew it was going to be difficult to come home, but I had no idea the roller-coaster of emotions I would be on. I haven't posted anything on the blog- mostly because I am at a loss for words on how to truly describe where I am at. Also, I cannot seem to go one day without crying - and looking at the blog makes me cry all the more. You may be wondering why I would be such a cry-baby. If you are wondering that then you must not know me very well. Truth be told I have been crying tears of joy since I left Africa. I cannot say I haven't had moments of sadness because for sure I miss Africa more than I thought possible. I have had moments of sadness, anger, irritation, irrationality, peace, and moments of joy. I have been all over the map in the emotions department. A special thank you to everyone that I have interacted with since being home - a thank you for putting up with me.
I have to truly thank ALL of my family, friends, co-workers, etc. for how welcoming everyone has been. The first night I came home, I came home to a freshly cleaned house, pizza, diet coke and family and friends. I rested for a few days and then headed to Grand Rapids. While in Grand Rapids I got to hang with my gang of friends by Aaron's pool (no better place to be) and I got to go to the beach with my friends Virginia, Jordon and Marcia. Virginia - thank you again for spoiling me beyond reason!
Once home again I spent time with my family, made it to a Tigers game and have been hanging out with friends from church.
This past week I returned to work. To my utter amazement my co-workers surprised me with a card full of money. They had a surprise fundraiser while I was gone to make sure when I came home that I would still be taken care of financially.
So, there has been blessing after blessing since my arrival home. It has been wonderful to get to see everyone and spend time catching up.
What has been the most difficult thing about re-entry into my life is that I miss Africa so much. This is actually a wonderful problem to be experiencing. I feel as though I got a taste of what my soul longs for - and then it was time to come home. Once you have tasted what you feel you were created for you don't want to go back to anything else. This is mostly how I have been feeling in the past few weeks. My deepest desire is to return to Africa as soon as possible.
I am grateful to God for the path that He has put me on. I have never felt with such passion the desire to return to Africa. I have never felt such certainty that the time will come sooner than later. I am moving forward with plans to return to Mercy Ships in January 2009. Stay tuned for more on my journey forward from here. Thank you is simply not a good enough word to express to all of you how grateful I am for all of your support and encouragement. Not only has my life been changed forever, but that of so many people in Africa that Mercy Ships serves. Thank you for your part in it all.


Kim said...

Jen, It is sooo good to hear your heart. Thank you for continuing to share, continuing to stay in the moment, and for being an example of what it means to chase after the dreams God has planted inside of you. I love you!! and cannot wait to see you next weekend, to swim with you and to walk with you!!

amy said...
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amy said...

Yes, Jenny, Kim is right. You are being an example of how to follow your God given dreams no matter how enormous they may be. As you are living proof, God's ways are not our ways. I am sorry the adjustment has been so difficult. You are facing such an overwhelming task in trying to soak up everything mentally, emotionally, and spiritually that it's understandable you would feel out of sorts. Just wanted to say that I am so proud of you and I miss you so much. Give yourself time, I know you'll work this out and then you won't feel so roller coasterish. And by the way, how awesome is that what your coworkers did for. That is blessing pressed down, shaken together and running over. Love, Weez