Wow, tomorrow 2 weeks ago, I left what had become home for me for the past 2 years. As uncertain as going to another country can be, from experience, it’s the trip back that is even more uncertain. Why? When I left my life in the States, I had had a place in my social circle. In my job, family, church, etc., I had a place and I knew how to fill it. Going to a new country for a extended term of service, there is a level of uncertainty but eventually you discover your niche. You become acquainted with a new level of normality of life. The whole process of leaving this new normality again yanks you from what has become normal and comfortable to something different. Something that looks bigger and scarier than the process of acclimating to a new culture. And that is, re-acclimating to life in the States. I say States as this is where I’ve come from but it would be the same for anyone going back to their home country after being away for years. Why is it worse in coming back then in going? The answer is simple. As I’ve written, when I left, I had my place. But upon returning, I’m not assured of that place. Life has brought changes in my absence. And in the face of those changes…is uncertainty. The uncertainty of acclimation.
Re-acclimation can be a monster, if not properly prepared for, that will gobble the unsuspecting into it’s maw. In a mild fashion, re-acclimation shows itself in slight feelings of disorientation, short term loss of direction in life and a overwhelming need to sleep. But in a more severe manner, feelings of bitterness, criticism and envy can be evident if some disenfranchised soul, upon returning, looks about him and sees apparent apathy and materialism in place of fervent zeal and spiritual passion. I pray God that I avoid this latter and more extreme version of re-acclimation. But it’s not to be altogether feared. God is still God. He is still real. So with Him, I venture through this stage of re-acclimation.