25 May, 2012

Like heaven

My socialising "tank" is very full now. I've had wonderful conversations this week. Here are some highlights:

Meeting a fellow OT (Occupational Therapy) face-to-face for the first time (we'd communicated in other ways previously). And finding her family and mine have surprising similarities. I also enjoying chatting "OT" with her, it's been a while . . .

Catching up with folk I knew from our first term in Japan.

Meeting new OMFers. Loving the diversity of this international mission.

Putting on my managing editor's hat and having discussions with writers. Talking about future contributions with future contributors. Exciting!

Reconnecting with the first Japanese person I ever really knew. I used to take Saeko to church in my old car back in my university days when she was at Bible college. It is amazing to think we're both serving in Japan as missionaries with OMF now. I'm not sure either of us would have predicted that 20 years ago.

Getting to know other missionaries better. In an organisation of 120 people, spread out across thousands of kilometres, it is easy to know the names and something of the ministries of people, without actually getting to know them. It is a blessing to have the opportunity to spend time with them and go deeper.

I often feel that despite the challenges and difficulties we face as missionaries, we have the best job in the world. Now that is a very general statement! When Christian brothers and sisters from many different countries get together there is definitely a feeling that we're getting a taste of heaven.

Maybe you think I'm exaggerating? There is something about being an outsider in the culture you live in that means you are always thrown off balance (even in our home countries we no longer feel like insiders). You can never get too settled or sure of yourself. Sure, that is a humbling and often humiliating experience. But at the same time it gives missionaries a sweet depth of personality that is really often quite special. When a bunch of missionaries get together we have a shared experience of being outsiders and the struggles that go with that.That gives us a special connection.

Tomorrow morning I head back to the "big" smoke of Tokyo. But I'm really quite tired. Hopefully I'll get a good night sleep before I face the "mob" again.

1 comment:

Meredith said...

Glad you have had a great week. Now that you are nearly home I am tagging you for the great Book Spine Poetry meme. If you don't have enough books at home we will let you use the CAJ library. :-)
If you want to and if you have time.