Built for a Time Like this


We are being asked to live with unknown cultural elements and we are uncertain as to how some things will play out. We find some things we have seen this week to be unbelievable. Some of us are homesick, others of us feel exhausted, curious, disillusioned, and engaged all at once. It’s hard sometimes for me to articulate the deep longings that come out as emotional overload and my guess is that I am not alone.

Those of us in international education or those of us who have studied abroad or those of us who have international partners as part of our day to day work are built for a time like this. How do I know?

Cultural Disorientation

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Falsely Perfect or Truly Broken?

A while back, a friend and I met for coffee. We chatted away about our families and life but towards the end of our time together, she began sharing with me about a personal issue. It wasn’t devastating but it definitely wasn’t something she’d want to tweet or post on her Facebook page. She had made a bad choice and because of it, a relationship had been severed. Openly she poured out all the details of how a few bad decisions had led to a regretful action.

The next day she called to thank me for being a sounding board (as opposed to sounding bored). Our time together allowed her to process her thoughts. It gave her the courage to reach out to her other friend and work to rebuild the friendship.

After we hung up, I thought about how much I admired my friend. Her humbleness and transparency was helping her to right a wrong and to move beyond it in a healthy way. She wasn’t hiding her mistakes but instead she was owning up to them and beginning the healing process.

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