Friday, October 2, 2009

The Italian Saga Continues...

How do I even start this? There is so much lately, and yet it feels like time is passing vaguely with no great intent. I still have not started cooking classes. That fact alone leaves me with little to do during the day. I read, and have opportunities to serve others, which I will expound upon more later in the post.

I have a few acquaintances here in Bologna, but no great friends to go and grab coffee with. Goodness, these are great moments when I miss Korea. No, not Korea, but the parts of Korea, and the people there. I miss having people to do things with. This morning my mother asked me if I was going anywhere, and I am afraid I might have had a rude tone with her in my response. All I said was, "no," but I could have said it in a nicer tone. My response was fueled by the thought of-- why would I go somewhere? There is no one to go somewhere with, so why I would I go somewhere alone? I actually did go downtown the other day by myself, but it was so boring. The only excitement was that I was doing something, I was exploring again. There was an undertone of adventure lingering in the bus ride, and the accomplishment of knowing which stops to get off at, but loneliness was soon my companion as I walked the streets of Bologna by myself for 30 minutes. You think that being in Italy would be exciting enough to make me happy, but it is not enough.

On that note, I will let you all know what the Lord has been in the midst of my loneliness and searching for a place here. I have been reading from this book that my friend gave me before I left Korea. It is like a daily devotional. It is called "Streams in the Desert."

The first lesson is that sometimes the Spirit requires from us a service of waiting. As the author states so eloquently, "I came to see that in the kingdom of Christ, there are not only times for action, but times to refrain from action.....Inspire me with the knowledge that a person may sometimes be called to serve by doing nothing, by staying still, or by waiting." The question now is can I learn to wait and how can I glorify Him when He asks me to do nothing?

The second lesson is more like inspiration. I will just leave you with the quote and let you think upon it. "It is your mission to walk onto the stage of this world in order to reveal to all of heaven and earth that the music in life lies not in your circumstances or external things but in your own soul."

I have recently had an opportunity to serve as I mentioned above. There were some circumstances in which I could use my cooking to serve others, and it was a blessing to me maybe more than it was to them. I was so thankful to have something to do with myself. There have been some things to do, but they have all been focused on me and my stupid cooking lessons. When I cooked for the family, it felt right, it was like that was what I was meant to do. I long to be removed from myself and to be poured out for others. Why must I wait, why can't it begin now? I was made for a life of service, and yet it seems there are other avenues I must travel before I can reach that purpose. Maybe it is like Spurgeon says, "Is the Lord uncovering your gifts and causing them to grow? Is He developing the qualities of a soldier by shoving you into the heat of battle? Should you not then use every gift and weapon He has given you to become a conqueror?" I don't feel like I am in the heat of battle, but maybe this time is a battle in itself. A silent battle that must waged within my heart. Perhaps this battle will increase my heart's strength and make it able to withstand all that lies ahead of it.

I am reminded now of my friend in Korea who would always say with tears in her eyes, "There is just so much goodness, so many good things here." I want my heart and mind to travel in that direction. I will keep waiting for it to begin, and remember there is so much goodness. There are so many good things here. Thank You God, for this place and this time even if I don't quite recognize all that You are doing in it.

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