Joy and Mourning

Posted on July 17, 2020 by VMMissions Staff

Dara, 16, spent the ages of 3 to 11 and 12 to 14 in North Africa. She is the daughter of VMMissions Global Ministries Director Jason Showalter and his wife Carmen. She will be a senior this fall at Harrisonburg High School.

Dara ShowalterArtist’s statement: Joy and mourning

Growing up as a TCK, I experienced a lot of opposites. I was always overjoyed to come to the States for the summer, but at the same time I would start feeling homesick for the places and people I had left behind. I would feel excited when we moved to new places, yet at the same time I felt sad about all the things I had to give up, sometimes forever.

The window is symbolic of all the windows into the lives of the people around me that were opened to me because of my TCK experience—learning the language and growing up surrounded by a mixture of my parents’ culture and the culture of our friends and neighbors. I was able to understand their view of the world and their view of my faith. This then allowed me to understand my faith through fresh eyes.

So while I grieve the ending of these friendships, I can be thankful for all the conversations I was able to have and the relationships I was able to build. I’m learning to hold these contrasts together. I am learning to mourn the loss of friendships and important places while putting my life and the lives of the people I love into God’s hands, trusting in his love and care for me.

One of my hopes is that God would keep showing me meaningful ways to bless and share his love with neighbors, teachers and friends, and to use my experiences from living overseas for his glory here.

Filed in: All posts, Photos, Transforming


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