May 17th, besides being my 17th birthday, was the seven-day mark of my coming back from almost three months in China. This trip was amazing in so many ways, a time of learning, serving, a time of growing closer to God, to the many old friends I met up with again, and new friends I met for the first time while I was there. In addition, it was the first time I’ve ever lived away from my family. (And consequently the first time I ever had to learn Beijing street names, call a driver, hail a taxi, order food, do my own grocery shopping, and so much more!)
One of the most encouraging, definitely-God things that happened to me while I was there occurred right after getting off the plane in Beijing. Despite daily study in the US, I wasn’t at all sure I would remember how to speak Chinese, at least not well. However, I found myself able to say anything and everything I needed to say, including words I’m not sure I even reviewed! Add to that the fact that I hadn’t slept for about 20 hours, and all I can say is “God is good!”.
Since coming back from China, the questions I get asked most are, “What’s next?” and “Will you be going back?”. In answer to the first question, this August I will be going to Grove City College, where I will be majoring in Special Education. Will I be going back to China? Yes, definitely. God has taught and shown me so many things during the time I was there, one of which is that after college, I am going back (permanently, I think) as a Special Ed teacher. I hope to go back again sometime between now and then, but I don’t know when. For now, although it was hard to leave, I’m just glad to be back home.