Nothing is ever what you expect it to be. Even though I knew New Zealand was going to be winter, stepping out into the cool day Thursday morning when I arrived I thought, “Oh this isn’t too bad”. And it isn’t. When the sun is shining. Unfortunately clouds cover that sun a lot! And then it is COLD! I hate being cold. I’m not sure if it is a “girl thing” or part of my genetic makeup, but when it is cold my body reacts negatively. I start shivering and shaking, and honestly getting warm is all I can think about. My mind goes to that place of reacting – what can I do to make this situation better, and ultimately, how can I make myself feel better. It is kind of funny because I didn’t bring my sweat pants, warm socks, down vest, or any of my “real” winter stuff. New Zealand is ending their winter, so I thought I’d be fine with my down jacket and some sweaters. I also didn’t realize I would be in a big campus-style house, not exactly equipped with central heat and a/c. Luckily I got to go shopping Thursday night to buy some of the basics I didn’t bring – sweat pants, thermals, a scarf, and some nice slippers.
Friday was even colder than Thursday – it rained a lot during the day, and even with my extra layers I couldn’t seem to get warm. I was so frustrated. I came all the way to this country and I didn’t want to spend all of my time focused on getting warm. I finally reached out to one of the staff leaders and shared my feelings. I didn’t realize how much this was really bothering me. Last year I went to Mexico and had to come home early because I didn’t feel well. I really didn’t want that to happen to me again. My leader and I prayed together and I felt so comforted. Not only by her words, but by the love she already had for me, someone she had just met the day prior. Just as when I had been praying earlier, I felt the Lord saying “Trust me”. And I know the truth – He says in Psalms to cast my anxieties and cares at His feet and He will strengthen me! But when I am looking at my circumstances it is hard to feel that. I know why God wants me to be here in New Zealand. He wants me to grow stronger in my faith! Faith is what we hope for but can’t see (Hebrews 11:1). I’m really thankful that God has put me in a situation where I need to operate by faith, and not by sight. Yes, this is going to stretch me, but, I’m excited to grow 🙂
Here’s a song I’d like to share with you all – hope you like it! Hidden – United Pursuit