Traversing the Chaos

In life we all go through transition. We all have times that we are dealing with changes in our lives. Adjusting to a new job. A new home. A new relationship. No matter what, we are going to have periods of transition. When you go through periods of transition you go from settled, to unsettled, to chaos, to resettling, and then to a new settled. The picture we were given was like crossing a bridge from solid land to solid land.

How each person interprets each stage of the bridge crossing is vital to the way they cross the bridge. This is how my bridge broke down, one word for the strongest feeling for me a that stage.

Settled – Contentment
Unsettled – Progress (My current stage)
Chaos – Busy
Resettling – overlooking (I meant it’s easy to ignore the minor difficulties here because they pale in comparison to the chaos you just went through)
New Settled – Relief

How would you describe each stage for you? What stage are you currently in?

While learning about this we watched/participated in a demonstration. There were four chairs, three bosu balls, and then four more chairs on our “transition bridge.” The first two chairs were normal, the second two had blocks underneath that made them wobbly and then the last four chairs were the same as the first four. The people traversing the “transition bridge” were members of a team, two singles (one leading and one in the rear) and a family all tethered together with “relationship ropes.” Everyone lining the the sides were the support, the ministry partners, the headquarters staff and anyone else who is willing to provide some help while this team is dealing with change.

Here is a link to the video.

Everyone reading this blog is my bridge support. I will need some of you more than you know. I want to thank you in advance, because without this team I would not be able to do any of this.  We are a team, hand-picked by God and together we can do amazing things!

Conflict Rezoolution

These last two weeks at MTI have been amazing. God has been working on me so much that it is pretty ridiculous. I do plan on sharing more details of that, but not today. While there is a blizzard going on in Monument, CO (yet again) I figured I would share how a couple of the guys at the training with me spent a day last weekend.

One of the things we have been learning about during SPLICE is our conflict style. You can be a lion, a teddy bear, a turtle, a fox or an owl. Check out this video and see if you can figure out what conflict style you are.

What conflict style are you?

What conflict style do you think I am?

A little different kind of love chapter

Most people have heard at least part of 1 Corinthians 13 at some point in their life and most likely it was at a wedding. Today during our training we were introduced to a slightly different version of the love chapter: from a missionaries point of view. I liked it so I thought I would share it with you.

If I speak with the tongue of a national, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or clanging cymbal.

If I wear the national dress and understand the culture and all forms of etiquette, and if I copy all mannerisms so that I could pass for a national, but have not love, I am nothing.

If I give all I possess to the poor,and if I spend my energy without reserve, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Love ensures long hours of language study, is kind to those who mock his accent; love does not envy those who stayed home; love does not exalt his home culture, is not proud of his national reputation,

Does not boast about the way we do it back home, does not seek his own ways, is not easily provoked into telling about the beauty of his home country, does not think evil about this culture.

Love bares all criticism about his home culture, believes all good things about this new culture, confidently anticipates being at home in this new place, endures all inconveniences.

Love never fails; but where there is cultural anthropology, it will fail, where there is contextualization, it will cease; where there is linguistics, it will vanish.

For we know only part of the culture and we minister to only part.

But when Christ is reproduced in this culture, then our inadequacies will be insignificant.

When I was in America, I spoke as an American, I understood as an American, I thought as an American; but when I left America, I became a learner of a new culture!

Now we adapt to this culture awkwardly, but He will live in it intimately. Now I speak with a strange accent, but He will speak to the heart.

And now these three remain: cultural adaptation, language learning and love.

But the greatest of these is love.

Language learning fun

So the last two weeks has all been about language learning. I came in with the erroneous thought that I would be learning German and instead I learned some Jeh and Russian and bent my mouth to make sounds I never even knew existed. The past two weeks have taxed my brain and mouth and I hear the next three weeks will tax my heart. Today’s post will be a quick one, but I want to share with you all a video my friend made that will kind of show you what it is I have been doing for the past two weeks.