Our family and my marriage with Lily has been great. We’ve been in a really good season recently. We are growing in Him, we are growing together, and we are joyful and thankful. However, everything else seems to be a struggle as of late. It seems like all the struggles have to do with “people” issues.
Our home organization is experiencing some transition, with leadership but also local staffing. Dealing with this has been emotionally draining for both Lily and myself.
Our local discipleship group here is (finally) starting to deal with some major issues (not necessarily with us, but with each other and with their own relationship with Father). This can be a really good thing! We anticipated that as we got deeper and closer with each other (and with Father) that problems and conflict and doubt and sin will inevitably come up, but we never considered what that would look like or what Lily and my role would be when the time came. It’s been emotionally and spiritually draining, but I guess that’s what we are all ultimately called to do. We are called to lead (and be led), to invest (and be invested in), and to love (and be loved) on those that He has brought into our lives. Hardest thing has been as we get deeper in the word people (our friends that we have called family here) are starting to question their faith...that the faith isn’t as “easy” as they once thought.
The clinic truly is a mess. It seems like we are doing well, superficially, but there are toxic components that we have tried to give grace for and pushed under the rug time and time again. This has been extremely draining for many involved. We’re thinking of ways to fix this.
Many family and close friends are dealing with very difficult, personal, situations. It’s a wonderful privilege to walk alongside them, to carry each other’s burdens. However, it’s been hard because I love these brothers and sisters, and it hurts me to see them hurting. I realize the best I can do is rest in prayer, and to find peace in that.
Lastly, I (along with Fiona) had the privilege of visiting the children’s home in Yulin where we’ve visited since 2007/08. Father reminded me and allowed me to see why we came to China in the first place. It’s to serve children like this! To serve children orphanage or abandoned. To serve children without parents that love them or children without family capable of caring for them. Not saying the last 3 years have been all for nothing. Lily and I have been privileged to serve in all these different capacities over the last 3 years. We’ve learned, grown, met amazing brothers and sisters we now call family, serving in amazing ways, but now have been reminded why we came in the first place. We have been reminded what makes both of us tick. We know its difficult in this crazy environment now to do very much direct orphan care. We also know our ultimate purpose is to live like Christ, disciple as Christ commanded, and love in ways only Christ could. However, we are figuring out how to live, disciple, and love while/through caring for orphaned and abandoned children. It may not look like how we envisioned back in 2008. It may not even look like how we envision it now. We realize serving here is (and needs to be) so different from serving in many other countries, despite the target population being the same. We are open to Him showing us the way.
So many things on our minds. Anyways, all these (not necessarily bad) things have led me to not be in a very good place. It’s the first time in my life where I feel like a true failure. People always told me you are doing too much, but I have never ever felt like that…until the last few weeks. I actually feel like I can’t handle anything else. I feel much weaker than I ever thought.