Explore Panel: 'What were your first six months living overseas like?'
October 2022

Many missionaries must adjust to life overseas in order to reach their target people group and each of them have their own challenges and set of circumstances. Our missionary panel briefly describes their experience in this month’s Explore News.

Exciting & Challenging

"I feel like the first six months of our time on the field was both exciting and challenging. We really put effort into connecting with our teammates and that was helpful for our long term health. We also spent time connecting with different locals and churches to get a better idea of what was happening and what specific roles God had for us. It was a time of continuing to explore and figure out how our vison for things fit into what was actually happening on the field."

The Crucible Came Later

"My first six months were great! I made friends, found an apartment, started studying language, got to travel and get a bigger picture of missions in Asia. It was a good start. It was fun living as a tourist. But culture shock and culture stress hit e at the two-year mark; that was the real crucible for me.

People riding escalatorAdjusting to life overseas is different for everyone. Sometimes it's like an escalator. It takes time but you eventually get where you need to be and you just hope you don't have to take the stairs.
Photo by: D.B., Eurasia Regional Director

Timing Matters

"We arrived February 2020, so our first year on the field happened during the pandemic. We focused on language learning in a capital city on a different island than our team. We faced many challenges there and returned to our team's island in order to finish language there, doing online classes. 

Overall, there were many unexpected things, but, as cheesy as it sounds, I am grateful for God's timing in it all. We got settled in our more permanent neighborhood and God provided us connections to a community we could begin ministering to, which was an answer to one of our prayers. Every month was different and full of adjustments during the first year."

Maybe their experiences have prompted you to take your next step on your missions journey. We’d love to talk to you about it!

• Find out how you can become a SEND missionary.

• Explore where and how you can serve with SEND

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