My sentiment towards not wanting to be in Manila is not exactly a secret. The few friends I have here know that my heart is somewhere else (read here to know where). But despite me not wanting to be where I am, I’m more than conscious that it’s where I need to be. By the grace of God, I’ve learned to understand my life’s seasons and at this point, I know I’m exactly where I need to be.
In many ways, I know I am where I am right now out of need; it’s for a purpose. And I’ve decided to fully embrace what’s ahead of me since day one. Below are three things that have helped me adjust when I moved back.
BE STILL. Relax and take it easy. There’s no better place in life than knowing you’re exactly right where you need to be (See the pattern?). Once you have that assurance, it’s easy to recognize and have peace. And peace is more important than anything else, even a desire fulfilled is no guarantee that you can have peace. Peace can only be derived from being content with where you are and being grateful while you’re there. Being still – even in a place you don’t want to be in – is a healthy starting point of not only appreciating what’s around you but also growing up with it and possibly thriving in your current environment.
SHUT UP. It’s hard to keep quiet about things you strongly feel about, but at times shutting your mouth is a necessity for sanity. When you’re in a place you don’t want to be in, there’s a tendency to see everything that’s wrong with it or at the very least, compare it to somewhere else. But spoken words (a topic I’d love to be an expert in) have power and if you fill your personal and external environment with negativity or complaints, anything and everything may end being unpleasant before you.
PLOW AHEAD. Wherever you are, whether it be a version of your paradise or earthly abyss, move forward. Inertia doesn’t build momentum, movement does. And you need to do it anywhere because progress can be attained regardless of your environment. You don’t wait for growth to just happen; may it be personal, professional or relational. You plow ahead and work. You plow ahead and build new relationships. You plow ahead and decide that you will make the most out of whatever your season is.
In the past six months, I’ve been to three countries; have met a city mayor, have been part of a nonprofit, have been given a ministry in church, have been helping in organizing a TEDx conference, and have spent the most time I’ve had with my family in years. Not to mention…and this is a breakthrough, I’ve gained weight! Though my heart is in New York, I know right now my calling is in Manila and by grace and only by grace did I gain the strength to decide to make the most out of it. And what a great ride has it been, so far!