Taking a step back : a weekend in dacha country

We spent the weekend in dacha country not long ago – the land of wooden houses, apple orchards, mushroom hunts and trees.

It’s a bit hard to remember the last time we left the city – it was in July I think, when we exchanged Moscow for Paris – one mega-city swapped for another.

So, it was really nice to get out to a place with fresh air, no elektrichka breaking down outside your window and no exhaust fumes.

 The best part is that we went with a group of the most beautiful people from our young adults group at church. They’re each amazing constellations in their own way. I felt rich just sitting around the breakfast table with them, listening to the conversation.

It’s easy for me to isolate myself here. My family is far away – no mom or sister calling me up or dropping in for unscheduled visits. My work schedule is so erratic that I’ve backed out of the majority of my church responsibilities – Sunday school, children’s church, prayer meetings. I’m in the office half of my weekends, and turn down a lot of social gatherings.

Someone asked economist husband and I recently what we do for fun in our free time. We didn’t quite know what to say. Ummmm…we sleep. I make dinner. Economist husband does the dishes. Some times we watch a movie. On our days off we love to get some work done….

Actually, we both really like working. And Moscow is a city made for working – a city full of workaholics. We both have our various projects and dreams that we’re excited about. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in them, and get a little lost, shut up in our apartment.

But sometimes, it’s good to step away from it all – to get out of your house, and out of your routine – take your eyes away from the clock and the computer and spend an afternoon drinking tea, and listening to someone else’s story…

Like the missionary who made friends with his taxi driver one night, or the grad student who’s passionate about introducing people back home to the awesomeness of the Russian church, or the ballerina who’s doing all her studies in Russian (see? I told you they were amazing!)

Just listening to them I’m challenged and inspired and I start to think – what about a more radical and focused life? What about the fantastic life that God has for me that I just need to step into?

And I start to pray – God, give us a bigger vision of You and of what You have for us…


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