As the year closes, we bring you a new series on our adventures. This series is called #dailylife and will have little snippets of life combined with some perspectives on what we’re learning along the way. Today’s post is from Eunice:
Did I mention that I’m starting to write Chinese (since speaking is a challenge for me and trying to write gives me a way to connect with my father-in-law)? One character that I really like (see image) means rest, security and safety, the type found in being home among family and friends. In fact, I just learned that the character is created by placing a woman under a roof (adding a woman to a home is said to create a sense of peace and rest). In fact, this is the same word for “rest” found in Matthew 11:28.
But when we are fixed on rest, we may become unwilling to risk the unknown and the possible failure that results.
The Institute for Cultural Communicators purposefully pursues change in the form of transformation by the power of God with phrases like “Risk It” and “A Safe Place to Fail” (as we learn new skills). OMF has a value “We trust in God” and often quotes our founder J. Hudson Taylor, “Unless there is an element of risk in our exploits for God, there is no need for faith.”
But what’s a person to do who likes security and safety when she knows she’s called to risk it as part of God’s call on her life?
Intentionally pursue risk as a way to strengthen the risk tolerance muscle!
Today’s story tells of one such adventure. One of the favorite local hobbies here seems to be finding new places to eat and celebrating the best prices and telling of the best tastes from your most recent adventure. The other day I went out to eat at a new hawker center while Au ate at the office. I told him I’d take him there one day.
We like to go running early every Saturday morning, cool off while doing our week’s marketing at a wet market, and then reward ourselves with a local breakfast in the outside food court. It gets tedious to always follow the same route so we like to mix it up a bit. In fact, this Saturday I told Au, “Let’s run to that new hawker center today! I’ll show you how to get there.”
I had never actually gotten there on my own and certainly not from our home in Pandan Valley but I figured if I looked at where I wanted to go on Google Maps ahead of time, we’d be fine.
I don’t like to run with my phone since I’d need to use data and manage sweaty eyeglasses to access my maps. It was only a 2 mile run and I already knew 75% of the route!
And we were off for our morning run by 7:20 am! The park connector, as usual, was busy with runners, cyclists and dog walkers (lovers usually wait until the evening). “Is this Holland Ave?” I queried. “No, it’s Holland Drive.”
“But I need Holland Ave,” I continued. “Let’s keep running.”
So we continued running. Next I knew we were at the next MRT station, Commonwealth. “Hmm, I think we’ve gone too far. How do we work our way back to our breakfast destination?”
We crossed the road for the second time in six minutes and walked across a jogging track up a hill. We found ourselves facing Singapore’s first flatted factory, an industrial area ideal for small businesses located alongside housing for convenient access to a local work force. We didn’t know where we were but we were sure learning lots about our new host country!
I asked for help from a local. It’s always easier for the one who looks like a foreigner to ask for directions, we’ve discovered. She directed us to a food court, but not the one we wanted.
We tried walking a little bit more, trying to act as if we believed we’d find it if we kept looking and then suddenly, around a corner, right before our eyes, and 50 minutes after we should’ve arrived, I recognized our location as our desired destination. SUCCESS!
But the real success of the day, for me, was the inspiration I had for today’s blogpost and the encouragement I felt to keep embracing the new and the uncertain with a sense of curiosity and adventure. After all, this is just a very small part of what it means to face #thetaskunfinished.
Thank you for your prayers for us while we learn the culture and our new roles. Will you pray for all who labor in God’s kingdom who daily need to choose whether to retreat into safety or advance into the unknown?