Vacay to Malaysia: An Unexpected Lesson on Home

We just returned from spending several days exploring Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with our IHSI Directors and friends, Eric and Ginny Hanson. They needed to work on some visa stuff and decided it was a good time for some R&R. Did we want to come with? Heck yes! So we packed our bags and headed for the land of endless shopping malls, Chili's, Starbucks and aircon. How sweet it was! 

A few of our favorite things: Chili's chips dripping with queso, Starbucks lattes, Haagen-Daaz ice cream, perusing the vendor stalls in little India, being a part of a city which operates with organized systems and watching a movie in a theater with popcorn! The highlight of the trip, though, was spending time with the Hansons. Over the years, we have learned that building community takes time spent together, growing trust and memories established. Our trip to Malaysia was memory-building with Eric and Ginny and we loved that! We will always remember the taxi drive with the man who worked 100 jobs (it seemed like), Noelle banging her head on glass while trying to see a pen, being crammed in a booth watching the World Cup and eating ice cream at TGI Fridays, taking night pics at Petronas towers, and shopping for maternity clothes.

The trip also taught us an unexpected lesson. We loved the comforts and order of Malaysia but there was something deeply satisfying when our plane touched down on Cambodian soil. That night we took a tuk-tuk to do some shopping and found ourselves drinking in the sights and smells (some savory, some not) of this strange and wonderful place we are so privileged to call home. It encourages us that God is knitting something into our hearts here that is summed up in the word "home." And it has caused us to think...what is home exactly? It's not necessarily having all of your friends and family nearby (though that is incredible!). It's not having everything that is comfortable and familiar at your fingertips (though Starbucks on the corner is a beautiful thing). Our conclusion at this point is that home is following God. This is what the men and women of Scripture model for us in the midst of their faults, their triumphs in faith and their failures in doubt. God is the only ONE whom we are guaranteed to have as a companion for all of eternity. As believers, we are most at home when we are with Him. 

We are only beginning to learn this truth. Can't wait for more of the journey...

Enjoy the little photo journey...

Eating at Tony Romas. Yummy.

One of our favorite malls - below the Petronas Towers.

Pillow Bread? Something like that. These were actually quite tasty. Many new and interesting things to eat in Malaysia.  I (Jacob) stuck with mostly western food. I'm an American boy.

After the pillow bread.

Noelle and Ginny shopping for maternity clothes in Little India. Quite an experience. As you can see in this photo, Noelle is done with me taking pictures of her.

The beautiful pond opposite of the Petronas Towers. Beautiful!

Petronas Towers during the day.

Our friends, Eric and Ginny let us take a few pictures of them.  These are so fun!

A few photos shot by one and only Eric Hanson. Thanks, Eric!

Buying some dragon fruit - one of Ginny's favorite!

Traffic near Little India.

Some local food.

The heart of Little India. Really fun!

Petronas Towers at night. Beautiful!

Fountains at night. 15 sec. exposure. I love this shot!

Another long exposure.

The front of our favorite mall.