May 29, 2024
Book Reviews, Evangelism, Learning Attitude, Gospel, Disciple-making, Lifelong Learning

Adopting the Mindset of a Scout

Why are some people more open to the truth? As missionaries, we want people to change their minds about God and their relationship to him. We frequently are dismayed at how unwilling people are to change their thinking. They resist beliefs that are at odds with those of their parents and culture. But thankfully, sometimes we encounter people who are amazingly willing to reconsider their beliefs and look seriously at the truth claims of Scripture. We rejoice at what God has done to prepare them for the Gospel. We may find out that there are circumstances and past events in their lives that have made them more open than their neighbours. But how do we describe this openness and how do we cultivate this openness in others and in ourselves? I believe we can find some answers in Julia Galef’s book, The Scout Mindset: Why Some People See Things Clearly… Read the whole post
Mission Leadership, Book Reviews

Making better decisions

At the end of January earlier this year, my wife and I as well as my colleagues in Ukraine had to make some important decisions. Were we going to stay in Ukraine? Our embassies were warning us about an impending invasion from Russia and encouraging us to leave. If we stayed, what would be sufficient reason to leave in the future? If we left, where would we travel to? Bertha and I had tickets to leave Ukraine on February 20 for some training we had planned many months ago. Should we wait until then or change our travel plans so as to leave earlier? Missionaries make life-altering decisions Cross-cultural workers like ourselves have made many life-changing decisions over the course of our missionary career. Our initial decision to join a mission organization had significant and long-lasting consequences for ourselves, our families and our sending church. The decision we made to… Read the whole post
Multicultural Teams, Cultural learning, Cross-Cultural Living, Assessment Tools, Evangelism

CQ Communication & Decision-making Cultural Value Orientations

Introduction: In this second blog post discussing the ten cultural value orientations of Cultural Intelligence (CQ), I will focus on the values related to communication and decision-making. It is important for the cross-cultural worker to understand these different values in order to avoid misunderstanding and offense. In order to help you, I offer an example in each value orientation pair. I’m sure you can come up with examples from your ministry context. Again, I’ve included a discussion question after each summary of the three identity related cultural value orientations. Please share your comments. I would enjoy hearing your thoughts. Low-Context/Direct and High-Context/Indirect: Communication styles differ in important ways between low-context and high-context cultures. In low-context settings, the relationship between people is a small factor in many conversations. For instance, the length of the line at a checkout counter is more important than the relationship one has with the cashier when… Read the whole post
Character, Confrontation, Insider Movements, Team Formation

Valuing Conflict

I have just finished reading the latest edition of the Missio Nexus Anthology, an issue solely devoted to talking about conflict in the Christian community. It includes a few articles particularly focused on resolving cross-cultural conflict, and a couple of articles about dealing with differences between mission agencies. But the idea that most struck me was that conflict is important, even necessary for our development in our Christian life. Ted Esler, in his closing article in the Anthology, talks about “Loving Conflict.”  Conflict, he says, deepens relationships, is necessary for good decisions and shapes our character.  He concludes, Do you want to have strong relationships, good decisions, and a deeper character? Then learn to embrace and love conflict.… Read the whole post
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