Thursday, 10 March 2011
Allow me to catch you up...
The title of this blog, “Come Away” is taken from a song written by Brock Human. I first heard the song when I was in Africa and fell in love with it. Little did I know the significance it would have for me while being in London. As I began to really listen to the words of “Come Away", they started to take root and touch a special place in my heart. Somewhere, deep down- a part of me felt it was one of God’s many ways of speaking to me. A whisper in my ear, a plead to come away with him. The lyrics of the song read:
Come away with me, Come away with me
It's never too late, it's not too late
It's not too late for you
I have a plan for you
I have a plan for you
It's gonna be wild
It's gonna be great
It's gonna be full of me
Open up your heart and let me in
In my mind, that’s exactly what I am doing, I am coming away with Him. Trusting that he has a plan for me. Trusting that these next few months are gonna be great, they're gonna be wild, and they're gonna be full of Him.
Due to the peer pressure from a number of loved ones, I’ve finally given in and agreed to begin a blog for my journeys in London! However, before you read any further, I would like to take a moment and warn you that the contents of this blog may not be the ‘awe inspiring’ adventures and clever stories that so many blogs these days are… This is it. Just me, Lindsey, sharing my thoughts and experiences of life in London to the best of my ability. My hope while you read this is that you will look past my grammatical errors and poor sentence structure, with a little grace and look rather, at the person behind the ink.
I will hopefully stay on top of uploading my latest photos and endeavors. (Bare with me… the life of a nanny is not all that glamorous). However, I invite you to join me in living through the moments as they come!
Moving on… I’m writing this first post from my favorite pub down the road from where I live, named Chelsea Potter. Chels and I have become quite good friends over the past two weeks, often times going on dates just the two of us. Tonight, however is different than most. It being the start of the weekend and all, it’s quite busy… I almost feel a twinge of jealousy, as if she’s cheating on me with all these cool, hip, city slickers. Oh well, we have plenty of one on one time ahead of us!
First things first, many have asked how I found myself in London and why. To lay out the facts quick and easy, here it goes-
- Returned from Africa having caught the ‘travel bug’
- Asked God ‘where to next?’
- Looked at a map of the world and attempted to picture myself in each country. Only felt peace when looking at Ireland and United Kingdom
- Prayed more
- Explored different cities and asked God for confirmation regarding any of them
- He responded the following day with:
o The first line of the first song I played in the morning sang, “I woke up in London yesterday”
o While I was teaching a lesson, one of my student refused to stop playing games on the computer. When I finally went over to see what exactly he was doing, I found that he was playing a game called ‘The London Cabby’
o Later in the day, a student mentioned that he had gotten into a bit of trouble and was going to move in with his aunt. When I asked this student where exactly he intended to move- he responded with, “London, England… have you ever heard of it?”
o While I was working at BR that evening, a couple came in looking for something to buy while they were traveling in the States. I of course asked, “Where are you from?” Their response? London, England.
o Needless to say, I went to sleep that night feeling more certain than ever that London was in my near future.
- Put up an ad on gumtree.com with who I was, what I was looking for, and my credentials
- Sooner or later was contacted by the VanTassels, an American couple who moved to London three years ago and now have two little girls.
- Prayed more.
- Communicated back and forth with the family and felt like it was a good fit.
- Spent all the money I had saved on my plane ticket and moved to London with 64 dollars in my bank account.
So, here I am- two weeks into it and I couldn’t be happier nor feel more certain that this is exactly where I am meant to be. I am living with an amazing family in an area, called ‘Chelsea’. Dana and Jim (the parents) have two young girls, Katarina (1 ½ yrs old) and Victoria (5 months old). Thankfully, they have welcomed me into their home and lives with open arms and I couldn’t be more grateful. Each day I wake up here feeling more blessed than ever and make myself a promise not to let the day go wasted.
Miss Kat- we have an interesting relationship :) I think she's beginning to warm up to me.
George- He is my ally when times get tough... always a good distraction.
Victoria- A little cuddle bug with tons of personality.
Before I left, I told my sister that I felt exactly as I did before I went bungee jumping in Africa (Meg, you know what I’m talking about). I felt as though I was going through the motions of jumping without thinking. If I stopped to think about what I was doing, then I would be overcome by emotions and fear of what’s to come or what could go wrong. So instead, I took each step one at a time. By the time I reached the airport, I felt as though my toes were at the edge of the bridge, I was scared as could be- but never felt more alive. The plane left the tarmac and my stomach dropped. ‘I have done it’, I thought to myself... I took a leap and I jumped off the bridge. In the words of an old cliché, “I let go and let God”. I stared at the journey before me and knew there would be ups and downs (just like my friend, Mr. Bungee), but I had so much confidence in the arms I was jumping into (… my homie Jesus). I knew I was protected and would eventually look back, just as I did with the bungee and be so proud of the leap I took and the ride of a lifetime.
In all honestly, I still feel like I’m free falling (no connection to you, Tom Petty). I almost feel like that life here has been so good that it must be a dream! I must still be soaring through the air, my hair blowing back and joy shooting throughout my veins! Recently, I’ve realized that the joy I feel isn’t just the rush of being on my own and in a new country. It’s not the thrill of meeting new people and grand adventures. It’s not a flame that is soon to burn out. The joy that I feel comes from a much different place than many of these earthly pleasures. In my opinion, it comes from above. To many, this statement sounds foreign and crazy, but to me- it’s reality.
Never in my life have I spent so much time alone. Shoot—before moving here, I had anxiety of going to the grocery store by myself, or even to the end of the driveway to get the mail (ask my mom). However, since living in London, I have not only gone to the grocery store alone, but taken the tube and toured galleries, museums, and gardens! I’ve gone out for dinner and drinks, walked to the park, gotten lost, and went shopping! Yet, instead of the familiar feeling of fear, I feel nothing but empowerment and… well yes, joy! Often times I spend all day by myself, doing who knows what, yet come home feeling as though I have just had the best conversation of my life. The only conclusion I can come to is that I am simply devoting this time, without distractions, to God. I’m spending each and every moment with Him- soaking up His presence and His love. Trying to look at each situation the way He does. The time I spend with Him is my favorite part of every day. Unlike almost any other time in my life- I feel content. Totally and utterly content. I’m not longing to be somewhere else or with someone else- I’m happy to be with my God, my King, my Father and friend. Now, is this feeling all day everyday? Far from it. But you know what? I’m learning! I’ve had a taste of the joy that the Lord can bring and I want more. I am trying and will continue to try everyday.
Is anyone still reading? I’m impressed if you are! For those of you who have made it all the way to the bottom of this post--- I apologize for the lack of thrill and excitement that you may have anticipated somewhere along the way! Or if my thoughts are a little scattered or hard to understand... like I said-- this is it, just me!