Monday, May 10, 2010

Saturated Again

So here I am in the staff room again with too many thoughts flying around my head, and nowhere for them to go except a piece of paper or a blog. If I were to commit them to paper I would be the only one to know about it, because anything I have ever written has never made it further than my wife’s eyes or perhaps one close friend. If I blog them, on the other hand, there is a slightly larger small circle of people who will be able to share the meanderings of my mind. There is also a slight chance that a team of digital archaeologists may stumble across them one day, and even their bemused looks, as they peruse my ramblings, would give me a small sense of satisfaction. That has always been my core reason for writing anything; sharing. That may actually make this post a little strange, because I am writing this during the sharing time that we have at the school every morning. If there is someone to translate I will try to partake in the proceedings, but today I just don’t have the energy to go through it.
I really do have a lot of time in my own thoughts here due to the language barrier. It is a lot of work mentally for the students, staff, and myself to communicate in a meaningful way. This becomes apparent when a few of the staff are together having a chat and there is never even a sideways glance at the Canadian guy sitting there. At other times someone will include me for a short time, but since this totally ruins the natural flow of a good conversation I will soon find my place phased out. This makes it very noticeable, because the majority of the staff can speak English at a conversational level. There really is no malice attached whatsoever, it is just difficult to make it flow. This whole scenario has put me in the place of being more of an observer than a partaker most of the time. Even when I am trying my best to piece together what someone is saying in broken English, or trying my best to strings some phrases together in Cantonese there is more observation going on than there is communication. It is kind of like talking to a baby. The infant doesn’t understand your words yet, so their senses are used to take in different kinds of communication, and information. This helps them form a structure for future communication, and a basic framework for linguistic interpretation.
There are a number of students who have enough language skill that we can go a bit deeper, and these are treasured occasions for me due to their rarity, and humanity. The students knew this as soon as I came to the school. One of the first things they would ask me was whether I was lonely. They also commented that maybe my fellow Canadian staff member wouldn’t be as lonely now with another Canuck around the place. I do hope that this connection between countrymen will help both of us get through some of the more difficult times here, but it would be folly to rely on it. The workplace is normally very transitory these days, and I think ministry work is even more so.
In the end I have found the importance of leaning into God everyday since I have been here. The truth of my need for Him in everything I do stares me in the face daily in a way I never knew back home. This does not mean that I always avail myself of His presence at every moment, this would constitute the perfection the Father found only in His Son, but the bare knowledge of this daily need is comfortingly humbling. I also find myself hoping that I don’t just stop at the revelation, but rather that I would act on it in an ever increasing dependency. Allowing my self to decrease, so that His all sufficiency may increase.

1 comment:

Koop Tribe said...

I have so much respect for you doing what you done love! You amaze me!