As I was walking home from work this evening, I looked up and saw the Washington Monument glowing in the distance. I laughed to myself and thought, “This is crazy, I can’t believe I actually live here, in Washington, DC!”

Every now and then, I have one of those moments.

So many things have happened to me since I moved to DC last spring. I can truly declare that living here has changed me for the better: Increased joy, a clearer perspective on my place in this world, a deeper understanding of what it means to trust in God.

I’ve also seen the ways I fall short, parts of my heart that need refining, roots that need to grow deeper.

I’m still learning.

I’m in a place that continually confronts my stereotypes and preconceived notions. A place that stretches me beyond what I find safe and comfortable. A place full of uncertainties–exciting, and sometimes a little scary.

I’m in a place that asks me to choose Christ to be the strength of my life. A place that requires me to rely on God’s grace, love, and mercy. A place that is teaching me that–well, it’s not about me.

And it’s been good. Sometimes it’s been hard. But God knows what we need.

Nine months ago, I was in such a different place inside and out. So many surprising things have happened–things I never would have imagined before.

One, I never expected to meet someone, and especially not on the East Coast. I remember telling my girlfriends a year ago how I couldn’t even imagine being in a relationship–how was it remotely possible to make time for someone? But I guess when you care for someone, when someone’s important to you, you rearrange your life to make time, and you make things work somehow. =)

Two, I never expected that I would be involved in a worship ministry again, and invested in a Chinese church community I genuinely enjoy. I am thankful for my loving brothers and sisters in Christ here in DC.

Three, I never expected to see my vocational calling in life so clearly–I really do believe that librarianship is where my “deep gladness meets the world’s deep hunger” (Frederich Buechner). I love serving people and I love organizing information. Working at a library, and especially one that is connected to a university devoted to social justice and empowering women, allows me to do both.

May I never take these gifts and blessings for granted.

2007 is going to be a good year.

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