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Field Story Recruitment

Things to Remember When It’s Time to Go!

"Living in another culture takes so much faith. Faith that God will always be with you and take care of you, faith in His goodness, and faith that He is who He says He is."

The average time it takes someone to get to the field is about two years after they contact us. There is so much that needs to be done it can seem like a daunting task. But there is a payoff, during that time you get to see God work in your heart and through the people around you. You get to share your dream to reach the unreached with countless people. You get to see God provide for your needs in ways you least expect it. What an incredibly rewarding, incredibly hard, incredibly fruitful season.

During those two years, or however long it might take you, you will go through different trainings to prepare you and your family for service in a foreign field. You’ll sell most of everything you own. You’ll do a deep dive Google search on your new location and culture. There is so much new you are learning and at times it is easy to lose sight of the important things.

As you get ready to depart, remember these three things:

You will need to hold tight to God and what He is calling you to.
God very clearly called you and He knew there would be ups and downs, joy, and trials. Culture shock, situations gone awry, and homesickness may sometimes leave you in tears, but in that moment, turn to Jesus. On the days when you question what you are doing, remember how faithful God is. Look at everything He accomplished during your season of preparation and getting you ready to be where you are. He wants to use you in incredible ways!

You don’t know everything.
There will be so many moments when your culture and the culture you are serving in clash. You wonder why people are acting in a way that you would consider rude. You may wonder why there isn’t a free, accessible, and clean bathroom. Or you may have to endure racist comments. You may get frustrated that the ingredients to your favorite dish aren’t accessible. Or get irrationally angry at yourself when learning a new language.

Remember to intentionally use the mindset that you don’t know everything. You are the new one. The way the locals do things are normal to them! The way we operate in the US may seem “best or most efficient” but it is not the only way to do things. Be open to trying something new and don’t be quick to judge how they do things.

Be flexible.
One of the first things I was told when I landed in my new home was, “if you can cross one thing off your to-do list each day, that day was a success.” I will admit that I thought, “you apparently don’t know me. I am a master at getting everything done.” But that mindset made me constantly frustrated and humbled me at the same time.

Your new culture will probably have a different concept of time and punctuality.
Plans change all the time, but if you spend the whole time frustrated then you will miss opportunities to serve, have fun, learn something new and love others. This was such a hard lesson for me. I want things to go as planned, but that’s not always real life.

Obeying what God has called you to is not easy. Hold tight. Eventually you will learn the language enough to have amazing conversations. You will build relationships. You will understand enough to appreciate your new culture and see that all the hard work has paid off even in unexpected ways. Living in another culture takes so much faith. Faith that God will always be with you and take care of you, faith in His goodness, and faith that He is who He says he is.

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