We are on the home stretch. Kevin will be home this week. These shorter trips are long enough to miss him terribly, but not long enough to get into a regular routine. I feel we’ve been hanging in limbo waiting for Daddy to get back. Having him back will not answer all the stress issues. In some ways it’ll create more, but at least our family will be together again.

We have been surviving these past three weeks. Not thriving, but not shriveling up and dying, either. There’s plenty to keep us busy and friends for the kids to play with. I’m so thankful for friends who come to stay with us for a few days and wash my dishes, for friends who take us out eat and fill my kids with sugar, for friends who have my kids come over for an afternoon and then feed us supper, for friends who text or call or email to see how we’re doing. Very kind friends!!

But let me be honest for a moment…adjusting to China takes a long time and is a hard process. Every day it takes a certain level (some days more than others) of surrender and humility to survive. Love is a choice, right? Everywhere I look there is something that assaults my senses. Not usually people (unless their too nosey), but the environment itself. Smog, construction, noise, dust, more dust, spitting, more construction noise, etc. If our city had sunny, blue skies every day, frequent rain, limited dirt, or dog poop our experience would be different. For foreigners used to cleaner air and more independence it’s hard to adjust. Our calling to this city is very strong. If not, there would be no other reason to live here. Just being honest…

So, with Kevin gone my normal acceptance to these differences has gone downhill, fast. My Chinese language, even for simple every day tasks, took a vacation. Simple words and grammar decided to elope. Yes, I had more on my plate with taking care of the kids, but also my mind was not in China rather back in the US with Kevin and all the experiences he was having. The funny part is when he landed in Asia my language ability miraculously returned! Everything comes in seasons. I wish the language had returned with a few more vocabulary words added to the dictionary.

Here’s the developing thought that startled me this morning. Life is a season; our preparation for eternity, right? Paul says to not give up the race. The kids and I are down to “two sleeps” and wow do I feel like giving up on this race. We’re almost there. Why do I have to keep a good attitude? Why do I have to be patient? Why can’t a just scream and yell and manipulate them to obey? Who cares? Self-righteous little me has put up with SO MUCH during this time and Daddy will be back to carry his load in a few days. So, why not loose it and freak out?

Is that the same attitude I’m going to have at the end of my life? A “been there, done that” attitude of why do I have to continue persevering? In China, people over 60 are considered “old”. Some over-60s seem to give up on life; give up living life to it’s fullest. Give up on loving and helping others, give up on being patient and mentoring the next generation. What an example to follow (not)! What will I be like? What do I want to be like?

  • One Tim six eleven (NLT): “But you, Timothy, are a man of G; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness. Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which G has called you, which you have confessed so well before many witnesses. And I charge you before G, who gives life to all, and before CJ, who gave a good testimony before Pontius Pilate, that you obey this command without wavering. Then no one can find fault with you from now until our Lord JC comes again. For at just the right time Chr will be revealed from heaven by the blessed and only almighty G, the K of all ks and L of all ls. He alone can never die, and he lives in light so brilliant that no human can approach him. No human eye has ever seen him, nor ever will. All honor and power to him forever! Amen.”
  • After considering this perspective two more sleeps seems like a piece of cake! :)

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    4 Responses to Running

    1. Randy Ark says:

      I just absolutely loved your heartfelt words, Kristin. It is so refreshing to hear an honest
      outpouring of all that has been on your mind. You are a very introspective and thoughtful person and I am proud to know you and always respect your thoughts and issues, always! Blessings to you and your wonderful family. What you are experiencing takes a very special person. Surely you will endeavor to perservere as long as G has His hand in yours lives there. There is a lot of goings on with China right now with cyber war suspicions. Who knows. Lol! Please keep in touch, it was so nice seeing Kevin again.

    2. Karissa says:

      What a great word, Kristin! Thanks for being so raw and honest. I have to say that thinking of you the last few weeks has kept me from fretting about things in my life that don’t go as planned or Kenton needing to work longer days which would normally get a complaint or two out of me (or more!). You persevered well. Your encouragement holds “weight” if you will. Keep writing, lady, this is good stuff! Love you!

      • Dawn says:

        You have shown great courage. Your thoughts triggered some memories of my sense of having no reserves left while solo parenting–especially at the end of the day! Some nights (when Jon was gone for a week or two and the children were small) I exited the children’s bedsides with great haste after the good nights were said to try to avoid displaying how little patience and kindness remained! Thinking of you with love! psalm 62

    3. Bethany Umble says:

      We just went through similar – although Ryan was gone just 3 days, not 3 weeks – and I wish I’d read this post BEFORE he went! I love your transparency, and I pray more grace and patience for both of us. : ) Look forward to catching up in a few weeks!