Post-trip Devotions (Days 6-10)
No Place Like Home?
Home. Sweet home. You’ve already stopped for that food you’ve been craving for days. What could be better than sleeping in your own bed tonight? It’s a great feeling to be home and surrounded by those you love.
Does something feel a bit off? Sometimes when we return from another culture, we have “reverse culture shock.” At first, it’s a bit euphoric and exciting. It’s almost a feeling of relief to be surrounded by the comforts that we’re used to. That euphoria doesn’t last forever though. You may begin to feel lonely and irritable. You might begin to miss the experience of your mission trip.
Life back home didn’t stop while you were on your trip. Your family changed and your friends changed. Even more, your life changed dramatically.
Your family and friends might not share your excitement about your trip. They might not realize how deeply your life was impacted. Some of them will want to hear a full report about your trip, while others may just want to know you are back home safely.
Sam gives some advice for how to handle this:
“How was your trip?” they ask.
How was my trip? Where do I start? Do I tell them about the bumpy roads and hours on the bus? Or about the weird food I ate? Or the beautiful people I met? Or the conversations I had that went long into the night?
How do you share with someone the impact of your trip when you’re not sure you’re done being impacted yourself? Focus on one story. Tell one story that really made a big difference. One story that you wish everyone could have experienced for themselves. And tell them why that one story stuck with you and how you wish to change because of it. Some people might want the 20 second version of your trip and others will want a full and detailed report.
Sometimes the process of changing a broken heart into lasting heart change means putting things into focus one piece at a time. Healing a heart bit by bit will lead to a stronger heart than trying to deal with it all at once.
God, I’m experiencing strange emotions today. I’m glad to be home, but my life has changed. Help me be faithful to share that change with my family and friends. Help me not be discouraged if they don’t share the same excitement that I have. Keep me focused on You and the change You are accomplishing in my life. Amen.
Think It Through: