Being here has pushed me to that point- the point that will either make me or break me. Cultural differences are now exhausting, not exhilarating. It’s hard to constantly be explaining myself. Certain aspects of living here have really pushed on my nerves, like noisy people (this is a pretty loud culture), crazy taxi drivers, and the all-around city life- it’s dirty, busy and stressful. It’s mentally and physically tiring.

So that’s where I am. It’s not a bad thing, just a part of the experience. But I’m at a crucial spot now. I can either give up, dwell on my homesickness and frustrations and be unhappy for most of my days left, or I can persevere. I can wake up in the morning with hope. I can remind myself each second that I want to give up and shut everyone out, that in less than two months this will all be an across-the-ocean memory. Because when I step on to that plane, I’m not just leaving behind a place. I’m leaving behind people. An entire culture. A whole different world. And who knows when or if I’ll ever have the chance to be here again.

I’m guessing it’s obvious which path I’ve chosen. So I’m going to lift my head and keep trucking. Any and all motivating words would be much appreciated.

But another lesson I’m learning: this is one of those times I’m so grateful for my faith. It’s different from being grateful for food, my education or family. I’m grateful for my God. My creator. I’m thankful for being able to open up my mind and my heart to contemplate who God is. And even though I’ve gone through my own struggles with my faith here in Africa, I’ve come out more at peace than ever. I might not understand everything, but that’s why we call it faith. Faith is believing without seeing the entire picture. Faith is trust. Faith is… faith. And I am forever thankful to even experience it. I wish everyone could understand this, I really do.

How He Loves- David Crowder Band. Inspiring:

“And he is jealous for me. Love’s like a hurricane- I am a tree, bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy. When all of a sudden, I am unaware of this affliction eclipsed by glory. And I realize just how beautiful you are and how great your affections are for me.

If his grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking.โ€

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1 Comment

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  1. Jaclyn

    Love you Amanda!!!!

    I can so relate… I was in Africa for 3 months. The last month was the hardest. That’s when God showed up for me… before that I really didn’t have much relationship with him at all! But I saw him do some wild stuff in and around me in that last month…..things that will stick with me forever. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Ya know what, though? I was definitely homesick… but once I got back I ached to be back in Africa like crazy!! And I still do… There are things I learned about myself in Africa that I couldn’t have learned anywhere else. And things I saw in the world and in people that I couldn’t have discovered otherwise. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about…….. ๐Ÿ˜‰ But most importantly, there were things in the culture and mindset of the people of Africa that I couldn’t find here in America, and for that I’m forever nostalgic. The reverse culture shock upon my return was almost worse than the shock I got upon arrival in Dakar.

    Praying for you Amanda!! And praying that God shows up in amazing ways around you, in you and through you!!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Jaclyn

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