My heart was full of nostalgia as we drove down the paved road to wifi one last time.  Everything struck me as familiar—the people, the places, the sights and sounds.  The chaos of the market was not overwhelming, but warm and inviting.  And then it hit me: this new place has become home. The girls sitting to my left and my right are now my family.  I have spent the last three months waking up next to them.  They are the last faces I see before I fall asleep.  They are the ones I pray for and pray with.  We are living in the new normal, where going to wifi is incredibly exciting because we get to see our friend Rithy, the teenage boy whose family owns the wifi place.  We can’t go somewhere without seeing people we know and giving hugs.  We cherish these hugs.

We have grown each other and grown together.  We have had many water fights and pond swims/baths.  We find joy in each other.  We encourage each other. We love each other.

It didn’t really hit me until yesterday that we are really leaving.  We called Vuthy in our room to pray for him together.  As we prayed, he cried.  And we cried too.  This was no longer Vuthy, the strange Cambodian ministry leader.  It was Vuthy, our dear friend and an amazing representation of the heart of God.

I know we have all had times where we’ve ached for the familiarity of home, but being there, in that moment, it was home.  It’s home when you reorganize the furniture of your room to create more space.  It’s home when you decorate Vuthy’s room with scriptures written in dry-erase markers and chalk.  It’s home when you go to the market in Cambodian pajamas and can do business in Khmer.

This place is home. These guys have become our brothers.  We have enjoyed water park adventures.  We have lived here in sickness and health.  We have given ourselves to the will of God.  We have honored the culture.  We have felt the welcoming embrace of the country.  Our normal has changed…and for that I will forever be grateful.

Four days to go…

More Articles in This Topic

Dun’t Fart

We Appreciate You God