Then I came across a verse that changed everything for me.
Exodus 23:9 Also, thou shalt not oppress a stranger: for ye know the heart of a stranger, seeing ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.
The Israelites had been in Egypt for over 400 years. The people that Moses was talking to at this time were not the first ones to enter Egypt as strangers. They had been born in Egypt, and lived there their whole lives. Yet still, they were considered strangers. They had the heart of a stranger, even when the land was no longer as strange, even when it was comfortable, they were still strangers. Their background, their lifestyle, their religious practices, their family structure was fundamentally different from the people of the land they were living in. They were living in a place where they would always be seen as strangers.
And I know that there are many who feel like giving up their strange land, many who feel they are ineffective or unnecessary. There are many who have given up, because it it uncomfortable and insecure, but it's supposed to be! God knows exactly where you've come from and how different it is from where you are. The backwoods of Maine is nothing even remotely like the fields of Punjab, but here I am, and there you are, and if we can just embrace the heart He has given us, the heart of a stranger, we can endure, we can survive, we can thrive, right here in our strange land, and maybe, just maybe, if we endure, it can somehow become home too.