One of the first things you may hear when you’re preparing to go to the mission field is to be ready to adapt. Obviously, when you move to a different country and a different culture and a different language, you will NEED to adapt. I’m not talking about that. Yes, that’s important and yes, that will be something to work on but I’m talking about a different adapting. I’m talking about adapting your expectations.
You’ll be faced with a barrage of situations where what you understood going into the situation will not be how things will turn out. You’ll need to be flexible and – wait for it – adapt.
It will require you to be humble, take the position of a learner and listener and observer (because how often is communication something done instead of something said) and release your understanding and preconceived ideas.
Adapting in this way will require you to accept a level of ambiguity but it will allow you to receive opportunities to deepen relationships and cultural understanding that will only aid your ministry.
It’s a small thing with the potential for a big impact.