Monday, March 7, 2016

Korea May!!

The title says it all!  It's been in the works for over a year, but I realized that many of you might not have heard much about it, so I'd like to fill you in so that you can be in prayer for me as I make a big transition!

Questions you may have....

No official leave date yet, but it's looking like the first week of May I will be on a plane to South Korea!

How long?
Definitely a year, and most likely longer!

What? will we never see you again?
Of course not! I hope to be able to make annual visits back to the U.S. I'm also always open to visitors and South Korea is a super fun place to explore...not to mention how good the food is! *salivating already*

I'll be working as an EFL teacher again back at Connexus Language Institute in a small town in Namyangju. I'm connected to Seoul by subway and can get into the city easily, but will live in a more slow-paced area. This time I'll be moving into Connexus's new building, which also houses the Korean Peacebuilding Institute, Northeast Asia Regional Peacebuilding Institute, a coffee shop, and our living quarters. That's right, I can shuffle right down from my bedroom to my classroom lickety split! I'm really excited to teach again, and to continue to investigate more how language education, restorative practice, and peace education can work together. 

Aren't you pretty chipper even though you're leaving us all behind?
If I told you I wasn't trying extra hard to focus on the positive, I'd be lying. In reality, this is a huge step, since it isn't just a one time thing, and there isn't really an "end date" this time. I will miss you all so terribly, I know! I know that some of you I might grow apart from, too, and that is really, really hard to think about.

But I am also excited for what is ahead, and I also know that God is faithful, and that he takes care of us--I experienced that first hand in Korea the last time I was there. I was fearful I wouldn't make friends or fit in; but I did! I'm still a little fearful of that this time around too...and feel fearful of the pain of losing fellow teacher friends who leave Korea while I stay on. But I also never have felt the draw to go back to a place like I have experienced with being a teacher in Korea. So I'm going to follow God's nudging, and trust that he will provide again. I'm also pretty pumped at the thought of being in the same country with my best guy and support, Yoonseo. :-)

How can we pray?

* Pray that I will be able to go well--to have the chance to say good bye to all the people I'd really like to in person, and spend some last meaningful time with my family before heading of on a new adventure.

*Pray for a great transition back to life in Korea. Pray especially for the ability to learn to speak (not just read!) Korean quickly and to make a great group of friends who will be around for a while.

 *Pray for Yoonseo and I as we transition into being the same place again after a long time apart. Pray that our relationships with each other and with Jesus are strengthened and deepened by being together again.

* Pray for opportunities and places for me to be spiritually fed in English. I want to be fluent in Korean, but that is going to take a little while, so I want to be sure that I get spiritual food that I can understand well.

* Pray for finances and opportunities to come and visit friends and family back in the U.S. once a year.

How can we contact you?

Facebook, Whats App, Kakao talk, email, snail mail, carrier pigeon etc. The snail mail address is:

Abby Long
1st Floor Korean Peacebuilding Institute
25 Goongchonro, Wabu-eup
Namyangju-si, Gyeonggi-do
South Korea 12269