The Breaking Point

Last night we ate dinner at the small restaurant here at our motel in Chennai.  Most of the things on the menu are Indian of course, but they did have a few Western choices.  Whitney ordered a cheeseburger and fries.  I have never seen a cheeseburger on a menu in India, ever.  I was happy for her that there was something she would like. 

When the cheeseburger came, Whitney took a giant bite, then her face turned bright red and she started sobbing.  She had taken such a giant bite that it made it sort of hard to cry and chew and tell us what was wrong all at the same time.  We finally understood that they had put green chilies in the hamburger meat.  Whitney was furious.  She kept repeating over and over, “I just wanted a cheeseburger, I just wanted a cheeseburger!”  She had reached her breaking point.

Everyone reaches a breaking point when they come to India, or travel to another culture where everything and everyone is unfamiliar.  I have seen adults do things in public that they would only normally do behind closed doors…like have a temper tantrum about having to wear pants instead of shorts.  Are the pants/shorts, or Whitney’s cheeseburger what is so important?  Nope.  It’s the sense of having everything that is yours taken away and replaced with something uncomfortable and unfamiliar.  It’s where the comforts you hoard at home are ripped away and all that’s left is the core of who you are. 

Who are you when all your vices are gone? 

I thought I had all that mastered until I came to India with my children.  Comforting them is easy at home.  If they get hurt, I can put ice on their boo-boo.  If they are hungry, they can eat something familiar and not even think about it.  When they are tired, they can go to their rooms and sleep.

Here in India it’s a different story.  No ice, no familiar food, and not much sleep.

When we are so far away from home, the words, “The Lord is my shepherd, I have everything I need” play over and over in my mind.  I believe those words wholeheartedly, but I am having to remind myself of the truth of God’s word every morning when I wake up and every night when I am laying in my bed.

It is so comforting to know that I have a Heavenly Father watching over my every move, and knowing that He cares for my children more than I ever could. 

One thought on “The Breaking Point

  1. Please tell WHitney that I’ve cried over my food in a foreign country once too…just between us, I did it also once on a mission trip to Chicago – yes, big huge elephant tears over food! …in Chicago!
    I can SO relate to your feelings in this post – except for the heat. I bet you are tired of being so dependant on other people to just go about your day. I wonder if you can call Jill for a restaurant recommendation?
    As I was reading this post, I was picturing yuour fam at a restaurant eating, and in my visual mind, I saw God’s hand over your table, protecting you. What your fam is doing there – and the things the girls are learning is HUGE!
    Love you guys! Praying for you every day!

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