Butterflies filled my stomach as I deplaned in Beijing, China. The flight had been long, and the hours leading up to it had not allowed time for much sleep—I was exhausted and facing a new life path. What would it hold?
It was hot and humid on that day in August 2003. I had been to Beijing once before, but it was in the company of a Chinese friend. This time, I was alone. I made my way through the necessary stations in customs in order to enter the country. As I waited in lines, my mind went back a few hours to my final minutes with my children in Seattle. Goodbyes are never easy, especially if you have already lost a member of your family. I blinked hard to keep the tears from rolling down my cheeks. Would I see them again? Being absolutely certain that I was right where I wanted to be didn’t calm the butterflies. In fact, it felt as though my butterflies were giving birth to butterflies that were giving birth to more butterflies instantaneously!
I made my way to Baggage Claim thankful for the free large carts that were available. Loading my belongings onto a cart, I slowly made my way to the arrivals area where I would be greeted by someone name Sun Rui whom I had never met before. My cart was top heavy with the Roland keyboard friends had given to me and insisted I take with me. Why? “You’ll need the music! It will help!” At that moment, it simply seemed like an unwieldy nuisance, and I worried that there wouldn’t be enough room in the vehicle even though I had warned Ao and the school that I would be bringing it.
As I stepped into the throng of people waiting for their travelers arrival, panic began to set in. There was a sea of Chinese faces; everyone was loudly calling out names. I had no idea what to do. Suddenly, as I scanned the crowd, I saw a large placard with my name on it! It was held by a tall Chinese man who knew right away who I was from the picture that had been sent. My knees went weak with relief as I waved to him. He smiled and immediately came to take charge of my cart and of me!
It was a tight fit, but there was room in the vehicle for all of us—including the keyboard! It took nearly an hour to get to my new home. When we drove up in front of the building, I saw the words “Foreign Expert Building” in large letters above the doors. This became my home for a year. Each foreign expert was given a private room and bathroom, and the facility operated like a small hotel with a service staff.
Going to sleep that first night was hard to do! I was worn out, but the butterflies returned with a vengeance, each demanding its own space until my stomach felt tied in knots. The next day, I was taken shopping and was able to purchase a CD player. That night before I slipped into bed, I placed a CD into the player. With the lights off, I listened to music that became my nightly private concert—“Simply Worship” – a compilation worship album of contemporary Christian music by Hillsong Church. The song I fell asleep to night after night in those first weeks was “I Will Run To You” sung by Darlene Zschech from the “God Is In The House” album. (See lyrics below) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7s2wCVcmYOU
Even today when I hear that song, I am transported back to those nights in Beijing. God used it to help me make the transition into a new land, a new culture, a new job—actually, a new life! The friends who sent the keyboard with me were right. I would need music, and it helped, but not just any music! I would need God’s music—anointed music that His Spirit would use to soothe my anxious moments, renew my joy, and lift my spirit to Him.
What song has God used in your life? What song brings you back to a time of His expressed grace, mercy, and love extended to you? Send me the song, a link, or the lyrics. If you feel so inclined, tell me the story behind the song. I will be blessed by hearing what has blessed you!I Will Run To You Verse 1 Your eye is on the sparrow And Your hand it comforts me From the ends of the earth To the depths of my heart Let Your mercy and strength be seen Chorus And I will run to You To Your words of truth Not by might not by power But by the Spirit of God Yes I will run the race ‘Til I see Your face Oh let me live in The glory of Your grace Verse 2 You call me to Your purpose As angels understand For Your glory may You draw all men As Your love and grace demands Darlene Zschech © 1996 Wondrous Worship (Admin. by Music Services, Inc.) Share on Facebook