Cutting the ties
The day you’d been waiting for, praying for, was finally here, but suddenly, you wished it had never come. You didn’t want to leave home. You wanted a few more hours, maybe days or weeks, to spend with your family, but your time was up. At the airport, you couldn’t even look at your mum without shedding tears. You were going to be spending the next four years away from home, away from your family and friends. This was unfamiliar territory. Territory you’d prayed for, and wanted to embrace. But at that moment, what you wanted even more was to take it all back.
Leaving home was one of those decisions you always wished you never had to make. You were afraid. You didn’t want to leave your family, but you knew you had to. You were happy and sad at the same time. Happy that you were finally starting college, but sad that you had no idea when you’d be back home. Your parents were excited to see you leave. You didn’t understand why. Well, maybe you sort of did, but you didn’t want to accept it.
I can still see your face as you said goodbye. Walking away was one of the hardest things you’ve ever had to do.
Things at college aren’t much better. You deal with anxiety and homesickness. You don’t know how to make new friends or how to adjust to a foreign culture. And while the phone calls back home are a consolation, your busy schedule won’t allow you to keep them up. You struggle with feeling as though everyone you care about has forgotten about you.
No, the circumstances of your college experience won’t help you break through this mindset of fear and dislocation. Actually, nothing human or material will. But don’t despair. God does have an answer for you. He didn’t bring you all this way to leave you in this pit of despair.
Be patient. One Sunday after church, you’ll hear the message that your heart has been yearning for. It’s this simple thought: God is ever-present, so none of us can be forgotten. God is our Mother and Father, and that means that even though you feel like your family is far away from you, your true parent, God, is right there with you—wherever you are.
This message will be a lifeline to you. Cherish it. Work with it. It will free you from homesickness and allow you to be yourself—to be happy and to make friends. You’ll realize that you are never alone, and that no matter how far you are from “home,” God’s love is always surrounding you with His care and protection.
I can see you now, smiling as you walk to your room. Such a different person than the girl who left her family at the airport. You feel good. The fear and anxiety that seemed so crippling before are fading away. Your whole life is changing—opening up.
From this moment on you’ll make a choice—a choice based on the simple but profound idea from that Sunday afternoon. You don’t have to be sad anymore, Ratia. You’re making a different choice—to go forward with a smile in your heart because wherever you are, you are in God’s presence.
RatiaPosted on Tuesday, July 10th, 2012 at 9:36 am | Follow responses with the RSS feed
Topics: Family, Loneliness | Tags: homesick, homesickness, strength