I felt a tinge of doubt today.
I went out to explore a part of Seoul that I haven't been to yet. It's the neighborhood near Ehwa Women's University and from everything I've heard about it, I knew I would like it.
So I set out for the hour long trip out there around 4pm, hoping to escape the worst of the afternoon heat. It was still pretty hot outside when I arrived but it was such a pleasent day with so many people out and about that I nearly forgot about the oppressive heat.
As I walked around the neighborhood, I was filled with a soft sadness that I will be leaving this place in 10 weeks. The truth is that I have found parts of Korea that I love and I will mourn losing them when I leave.
That made me think (and don't get upset grandma!) that maybe I would be happier staying in Korea. Won't I miss those parts of Korea when I am in Chile? Won't I miss the coffee culture? The way they have lot's of cheap places to get cutesy stuff? Won't I miss the food?
A hint of doubt slowly crept into my mind. I walked along the streets, thinking about all of it. All the places I have lived and loved. All the reasons I have loved the places. The feelings I have gotten as I walked down streets and the sadness I have faced as I left places. I soon put words to the fear that growing in my heart. I was afraid that I would never be truly happy anywhere. No matter where I go, I will have things about other places that I love and miss. I will miss the diversity of New York, the coffee culture of Korea, the weather of San Francisco, and so many things about life Chile. I feared that I would never find the perfect place to live.
And then I realized, I won't.
I won't ever find the PERFECT place to live because the truth is that I love so many different places for different reasons and that is a blessing. AND... all places are affected by sin and literally, there is no perfect place.
So I asked God (finally) what I was supposed to do with all this. How could I know that He was bringing me to Chile when I had such torn feelings about everywhere?
God doesn't call us to live in perfect places. Certainly, that idea can't be matched with anything in the Gospel, but He puts us places to be a part of His work in the world to proclaim His glory among all people.
So God asked me (kinda, in His special way), "Where am I putting you for the great purpose of living a life for my glory? Where will you live to be a part of what I am doing among the people?"
And I knew that the answer, at least for now is Chile. They might totally lack a coffeehouse culture, but I am not moving there so Chile can serve me. When I think about Chile, I want to be a part of what God is doing there. I want to be a part of the church planting that's going on. A part of reaching the Bellas Artes neighborhood with the amazing news of a loving and gracious God who desires restoration. The Lord may take me somewhere else, but for now I walk forward toward Chile, excited that He has led me thus far. There will be parts of me that get homesick for New York, San Francisco, and even Korea. But in the end, my home is hidden in Him. And so is my joy.