2016 plans

Two years ago marked the end date of my service in China with ELIC.

Three days ago, I said Yes to going back.

I know, that's probably not really a shock to any of you.  (If it is, I'm sorry...)

So here's the scoop:  I'm planning to be back in China in August of 2016, once again teaching English at a university.  (Where, you may ask?  Great question.  Just hold onto that one for...uh... a few months... and then probably a few more.)

There are, as you may guess, a lot of unknowns.  (City?  Team make up?  Classes?  How long will I be there?)  The answers that I have so far are somewhere in China, more diverse than last time, yes, and at least a couple of years.

I have some mixed feelings.  I love Bloomington, I enjoy my job here, and my church has been a huge blessing to me.  My family is in the US, and let's face it -- Western Pennsylvania is my "hometown" in a way that nowhere else on earth is.  The thought of saying goodbyes in a year makes me sad.  I'll miss speaking the main language and all of the benefits that come along with that (though I suppose I do have a year to work on Chinese...), the easy access to cheese, and clean air.

I am thrilled to be working with ELIC again.  I'm ecstatic at the possibility of seeing Chinese friends and siblings again.  I'm excited to get back to teaching and move deeper into professional development. (Let's face it, working at a coffee shop is fantastic for a lot of reasons, but I find teaching to be a more deeply engaging profession than barista-ing.  Which is not to knock good baristas, but is just a fact.)

Last time, my team was made up of all recent college grads.  This time, my team could be made up of families, recent college grads, second career folk... anyone!  I'm guessing that will present some challenges, but it also offers chances for a lot of depth and dynamic relationships.  That would be a great thing for y'all to start praying about -- team relationships.  :)

A few other things to keep in mind:

  • Logistical preparations.
  • The students I'll have.
  • The coming year as I'm living in the US and in the middle of a lot of great relationships here -- that God would continue to equip and grow me!

Anyway, I'm sure I'll be posting quite a bit over the coming months as I learn more about what to expect.  Thanks for being along for the journey!


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