Tuesday, May 10, 2011

It's farther than I thought

I’m struck by the fact that we, as Americans, consider Canada “a lot like us”. We assume that because Canada is just north of the US that our countries are alike. Is that pompous of us or just presumptuous? I admit it never occurred to me how stark the differences might be.
Canada is much more European, its people more laid back and private, and its technology much less advanced than I’d imagined. This country of 35 million, one-tenth of the US’s population, simply does not have access to much of what we take for granted in the US.
Long distance calls here are to anyone outside your area code. Organic chicken at Costco? They thought I was crazy. Fast internet? Bell offered me speeds of 2 Mbp... (does everyone remember dial-up?) Here’s a kicker - you pay for internet by usage!  No sitting around and surfing the web, or streaming TV shows, unless you want an enormous bill. This is not a bad thing when you think about it. 
Here’s what I’ve learned... I’ve been pressing for the wrong things. I’ve been expecting the same things in a different place. Why would I? Yesterday, while unpacking, I stepped around an upside-down plaque. Walking past it, I was immediately struck not only by its familiar shape but also by how God immediately pressed, from my memory, what it said: “The Will of God will Never Take You Where the Grace of God Cannot Keep You”.
I’m not where I was - I am where God has sent me. I am not in the familiar, nor should I be looking for that. This is different. Canada is different. I am different. This isn’t about geography. It’s about God moving me - pushing me, pressing me, reminding me, to rely on Him and not what makes me ‘comfortable’.   

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