As part of this blog, I want to write about my experiences of living in a foreign country where the language is not my mother-tongue , and the lessons I am learning on this journey. This is one of those posts:
Understanding each other isn’t always easy – and when you bring different cultural perspectives into the mix, it can be all too easy to miss one another. Living as a foreigner in a country isn’t always easy. But I also see that living in a country that you have always lived in and seeing things change isn’t always easy accept… or at least – it’s not always easy to understand.
And that is the key here: understanding, or in far too many cases, misunderstanding.
I recently heard the question “How can we walk hand-in-hand when we don’t see eye-to-eye?”.
And since I heard it, it has been going round in my head. It’s made me think, question and consider. While they are not fully formed or easy answers, I have concluded:
- We’re not all going to agree with each other the whole time.
- We’re not going to even understand each other the whole time.
- And it would be near impossible for us all to instantaneously change our perspectives which have been nurtured from so many years of varied cultural, familial and external influences, and are based upon on such individual experiences.
But we can try to listen to each other, hear each other out and meet each other where we are.
Don’t misunderstand me(!) This is not me saying that in order for us to work together you need to come round to my way of thinking – it is me saying that we both need work together and walk together prayerfully – and to continually try to see the world from each other’s perspectives.
You with me and I with you.
In this way, we will be living out the Kingdom of God here on earth.
“Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. ” – 1 John 3:18
And I don’t write this because I am perfect – on the contrary – walking hand-in-hand takes two…and I am one half of that whole.