That nice little title makes it sound like I’m going to give a very neat and easily understandable explanation as to why we’re moving back to America, doesn’t it? Oh yeah, I snuck it into my last blog post, so in case you didn’t know … we’re moving back. Next month.
But sometimes the “whys” behind things aren’t so easy to understand, are they? And then communicating that non-easily understandable “why” to someone else? Even harder. I’ll tell you the reasons that aren’t behind us leaving … that could be a good starting point.
We aren’t leaving because anything is wrong. We aren’t leaving because we couldn’t deal with living overseas. Well there were times I haven’t dealt well with it, but that was just part of it all; either way, it’s not a reason we’re leaving. We aren’t leaving because I just couldn’t handle one more meal that involved rice (although I wonder somedays …).
We’re leaving because God’s next things for us as a family are not here in Thailand, but back in America. It’s a very long and very emotional story and this isn’t the space in which to share it all, but I’ll give the nutshell version. At the end of December, I began a hiatus from Facebook . When I shared this with people and deactivated my account, my last status shared that we’d decided to stay another year in Thailand. And we had. I was emotionally and mentally gearing up for another year and we felt good about it; I was excited about settling in here. In January, things began to get interesting. Shun-Luoi had a job offer from an organization based in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. In the process of talking and praying about whether or not he was supposed to take the job and we were to move to Phnom Penh, an entire barrel (not a can, but a barrel) of worms was opened. We began discussing everything in regards to how we were doing here as a family, whether or not Shun-Luoi was thriving in his career, Shun-Luoi’s creative vision and how it’s drastically changed over the past year, the values we most wanted to live according to as a family, and whether or not we should move to Cambodia, stay here in Thailand, or … even move back to America. The American option surprised us, but because God was clearly bringing it up, it needed to be considered and prayed about. That led to weeks of intense discussion, much prayer, more discussion, tears (me), and stress. It wasn’t a clear “aha!”-type decision. But, after all was said in done, we decided that, while staying in Thailand was a good option, moving back to America was the better option in light of the factors we could see.
And so we made the hard decision that we were going to leave. Leave even though relationships here have been sweeter than ever recently. Leave even though we will not get to reap much of what was sown during the difficulty of the past year here. Leave even though the experience has offered us rich opportunities that we may never have again. Leave even though the details of what we are returning to are hazy. But this we do know; God’s timing for us to leave is now.
I don’t know all the reasons behind why we’re leaving. So, if this post leaves you with more questions than you had originally … well, you can join in with the “I’m not sure I understand’s,” of our family. I’ll share more as it develops, but this one thing I’ll say. God is doing some crazy stuff and setting the stage to show up in big ways in the lives of the Fong family. So we’ll wrap up things here, say some heartache-inducing good-byes, and return to America to pursue some new possibilities there.
And we’ll trust God with all of the why’s.