It is surreal to think that I have officially been in Chile for over 2 weeks. In a way it feels like I am on a long vacation, like I should start packing my things to go home. But I have 4 more months! I still haven’t totally grasped the fact that this is now my home.
The only Chileans I have met thus far are the ISA/Veritas staff and my host family. Other than these few, I am surrounded by only students from the USA, and I think this is a big reason why I feel like I am on a prolonged vacation with a bunch of strangers. I haven’t yet delved into my true purpose for being here: to invest in the lives of locals for the sole purpose of glorifying my Jesus. Granted, I have had some wonderful conversations with my fellow Americans, and the Lord has been working in my heart to prepare me for our missions activities. Patience has just never been my forte, and so I am itching to jump into our planned ministries.
However, I know that this waiting period is definitely a time of learning and growing in the Lord. It is a time of preparation. I am learning what it means to truly die to yourself and dedicate your life to Jesus; not just dedicate your Sunday mornings or Wednesday nights, but to truly dedicate every thought, action, emotion, and spoken word to the glory of the Lord. Specifically, the Lord is teaching me that this world is not made for my comfort. I know that the activities I have set before me will be physically and emotionally draining, and I most likely will not enjoy them all. But The Lord has told me to go, so I am here. And no matter how difficult this trip may be, I will do it because He has called me. And (Lord willing) I will do it without complaint. Because this life is meant for Him. NOT FOR MY COMFORT.
Other than these feelings, I am thoroughly enjoying my stay here in Chile! We have visited the capital, been to the beach, run through a vineyard, climbed up a castle, and attended a week of classes. Everything has been so enjoyable. The city is beautiful, the ocean is perfect, but the bus rides are life threatening. (Just kidding…kinda. I am convinced there is no test for a driver’s license here…) But in all seriousness, I love this place, and I feel so blessed that the Lord has called me to do His work here in Chile.
Marissa Morgan, University of Memphis, Chile Spring 2013