“I will extend peace to her like a river.”
Peace has wrapped me up in her arms, and I’m found again.
I’m found in 737 Calle Tzintzunzan, a little house tucked off the streets, away from the wandering eye.
I’m found in Centro NOE, a pale-skinned “guera” among a sea of faces with chocolate eyes, full hands and full heart.
I’m found in friendships rekindled over the dinner table- mugs of steaming coffee and the sweetest of pastries, piles of tacos or a tower of fries.
I’m found in the bent-over singsong laughter of friends filling the dark streets on a walk home.
I’m found in the New NOE, tears brimming over, because there’s nothing quite better in this world, than being found. There’s nothing better than living with the quiet assurance that you are where you are, for a reason.
And though my days are busy and trying, there’s nothing more satisfying. I’ve been given seven groups of students to tend to for an entire year. I’ve been entrusted with being love in Centro NOE and in the streets that have become imprinted within my memory.
I’ve been found.
I saw what I saw and I never can go back.
I can never return to the mindset that “comfortable” is the home I should never leave. I can never become accustomed to never seeing a suitcase waiting to be filled. I can never go about my days without thinking of the people I’ve been given to love. Without heeding the mission I’ve been called to fill.
And so, life goes on here.
And so, His mercies fill me in the mornings and stay with me until the waning hours of sunlight.
Don’t you miss it, little one. Don’t you dare settle, do you hear me? There’s something around the bend, there’s light yet to be seen, there’s a clearing in your wilderness. You’ve been called, will you heed? You’ve been chosen, will you rise?
Peace. Joy. Assurance.
Keep your hands empty, your arms open and your heart unlocked, child.
You’ve more to give.
I’ve more to give. And peace has been extended to me like a river.
For. I’m. Found.
I’m found in the unfamiliar, the distinctly foreign.
And my heart looks to this place as home, these people as mine.