cross-cultural

Gandalf’s Scream, Love, and Why We Need More Anger

by Jonathan Trotter on December 5, 2019

Anger is a wonderful, powerful, amazing, informative, life-giving, protective resource. Or at least it can be. Anger can be a redemptive sword, when it’s wielded by love.  “Anger is a surgical weapon, designed to destroy ugliness and restore beauty. In the hands of one who is trained in love and who can envision beauty, the […]

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For the Times When You’re Exhausted, Discouraged, and Tempted

by Jonathan Trotter on November 3, 2019

Some truth is just worth remembering. These musings about discouragement and temptation spilled out six years ago; perhaps they can encourage people even still… We moved to Cambodia about two years ago, and it’s been good. But it’s also been very hard. I’ve had my days of doubt, fear, and deep discouragement. I’ve looked around at the poverty, […]

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On Scarcity and Abundance

by Marilyn on October 14, 2019

I’m sitting on my couch, feet stretched out. The mosque next door has just begun their Friday sermon, broadcast loud in a language that is still unfamiliar to me. The electricity is on and I am trying to be grateful instead of fearful that it will go off.  In recent weeks, I have thought a […]

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Success or Faithfulness?

by Marilyn on March 8, 2019

It has not been an easy week here in Kurdistan. From difficulty with websites to difficulty with people, there are times when I would like life to be easier. I’m sitting now at one of the two coffee shops in Rania, listening to Adele on repeat. Adele is easy on the ears, and I find […]

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The American teacher stood in the staff lounge with a cup of yellow broth. Look at this, he laughed. It looks just like beer! A Tanzanian staff member just stared at him. Do you drink beer? she solemnly asked. He paused for a moment. Yes, he said. I do sometimes. That was the end of […]

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There are some stories that remain in a family and become a part of our DNA. These stories are told year after year, but they never get old. Here is one of our stories that reminds me each year of the wonder of Christmas. My mom grew up in a small town in Massachusetts called […]

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When Missionaries Think They Know Everything

by Amy Medina on July 4, 2017

A few years ago, a video started making its way around my Facebook feed–shared by lots foreigners who live in my part of Africa.  The video showed two African men shoveling sand.  There was a very large pile of sand to their left.  The two men were shoveling the sand into a wheelbarrow, filling it […]

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An Open Letter to the Kind People in My Host Country

by Craig Thompson on February 20, 2017

Dear neighbors: When my wife and I and our four children stepped off the plane in your country, with our 12 carry-on bags—and all our plans, enthusiasm, expectations . . . and naiveté—you welcomed us. In fact, the customs agent greeted us with a smile. And during the following years that we lived among you, we lost count of your kindnesses. We […]

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Thoughts on Sharing our Stories

by Marilyn on February 6, 2017

“Perhaps the greatest danger of our global community is that the person in LA thinks he knows Cambodia because he’s seen The Killing Fields on-screen, and the newcomer from Cambodia thinks he knows LA because he’s seen City of Angels on video.” ― Pico Iyer Years ago at a dinner party in Egypt, our English host was waxing wise about China. […]

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When the Mission Field Comes to You

by Chris Lautsbaugh on June 29, 2016

While rounding a corner on a run in the United States the other day, I came across a Muslim women clad in a headdress and robes. I could see her cower off the sidewalk a bit as this white, American man came plodding her way in middle America. You could sense her apprehension and read […]

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When There is No “Other Hand”

by Marilyn on May 9, 2016

fiddler

Although I’ve not seen it in years, Fiddler on the Roof is one of my favorite shows/movies. I’ve watched the movie many times and seen the performance live as a musical theatre production at least twice. The scenes that have found a permanent place in my memory are what I call the “other hand scenes.” These […]

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I Believe, Help My Unbelief

by Chris Lautsbaugh on December 30, 2015

In work, ministry, and life we all experience frequent seasons when things don’t work out quite the way we had hoped. In missions, our internal dialogues consist of “Am I making a difference?” or “Will these things ever change?” When we are trusting for provision, for a breakthrough in our health, or seeing a life […]

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