You can’t judge snapshot of a person, you have to judge them according to their trajectory, according to their story. And this is especially true cross-culturally.
Living and serving cross-culturally is very complex. Just staying afloat in-country requires a certain amount of administrative gumption. But in your administrative table of life, always keep a column for dreaming!
A shepherd reflects on the angels’ message.
Openness to the unexpected is a key attitude for mission. Mission is saturated with surprise.
At Christmas we celebrate the Proximity of God. God does not stay in heaven, dispassionate and objective. God is emotionally invested.
As we sing “O come ye to Bethlehem” over the coming weeks, I am thinking about the story of someone else who came to Bethlehem. Her name is Ruth.
A parable about the two brothers, Theology and Missiology, and why they don’t get along.
The patriarchs are a lot like Christians living among the unreached. They are an unwanted minority. They are met with suspicion and sometimes outright hostility. They are fighting for a foothold in the land. They live in tents. Fear is a constant companion.
Here are some quick thoughts on crisis, from hot in the middle of one.
We can get used to a degree of control over our lives that is globally and historically abnormal. James invites us to soften our certainty.
The Bible is a mirror in which we are supposed to see ourselves. There should not be a large gap between what you know and how you live. If that gap is growing, stop reading and start doing.
When reading the parable of the Good Samaritan through the eyes of Augustine, Kenneth Bailey or Matthew Henry as metaphorical Christology, we encounter an important…
I have just finished reading When God spoke Greek: The Septuagint and the Making of the Christian Bible by Timothy Michael Law. It’s another one of…
There is a great spirit of fear in the Western world at the moment, a lot of which is based on prejudice towards Muslims. Jesus’ method of discipleship involves taking us to the other side to engage with real people, not media caricatures, to expose and unravel our prejudice.
In Galatians 2:11-14 Paul writes: “When Peter came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he was clearly in the wrong. Before certain…
Worldview is a story. Here are two narratives common to western Christians that need ripping up and re-laying if we are to be of any use cross-culturally.
In Acts 2 the Holy Spirit fell, and Jesus followers began speaking different languages. What’s the significance of proclaiming God in various languages?
100 years ago 85% of the world’s territories were ruled by European powers. For a Westerner 100 years is a long time, but for the colonised it’s recent history.
Is there such a thing as “missions expertise” or should every church have its own direct involvement with the nations?
American books on leadership seem especially laden with tacit values – contextually true in the place of writing, but which don’t apply universally.
How Joseph responded when he found out about Mary’s pregnancy preaches volumes. Here’s one way to tell the story.
Westerners tend to read the Bible through the lens that all people are, and should be, equal. But that assumption is culturally conditioned.
Many people in the world are eager to encounter truth though their 5 senses. Is this something we need to get better at in order to reach more people for Jesus?
De-Westernizing our faith requires questioning our learned “indisputable laws of leadership” – in this case, efficiency as a measure of success.
When we view the Kingdom of God as a Hollywood movie – a seed, a struggle, then worldwide success – what are we missing? Is that the story the Bible tells?
To cross cultures West to East with the gospel requires that we tackle individualism.
Cross cultural workers often feel the pressure to be good at everything – superhuman, even. But maybe vulnerability packs a secretly beneficial punch…
The English saying “water off a duck’s back” describes many people’s experience in sharing the gospel cross-culturally. So how do you get water into a duck?
What is God’s answer to rebellion and dishonor? Prophet, prophet, prophet, Son.
English is the world’s international language. Why struggle to present the gospel in heart languages? AM gives us 3 compelling reasons.
How do you handle disappointment? Jeremiah, Carey, Kipling and John point us to robustness: “Take another scroll”
Indirect speech. Not backing down, not compromising, but a gateway into communicating in honor and shame cultures.
Narrative preaching is a powerful way to communicate, especially cross-culturally. But why?
Watch local movies regularly and it will help you explore language and culture in many helpful ways.
Any good book on cross-cultural ministry has a chapter on suffering. Why?
Christmas is the triumph of meekness. Witness God’s soliloquy in Luke 20:13: “What shall I do? I’ll send my son! Maybe they will honour him.”…
14 lessons in cross-cultural evangelism from Acts 8
“Post-colonialism is the world’s strongest form of memory.” I believe the post-colonial world slopes from West to East. It is not a level playing field.
8 recommended reads on contextual theology, with a highlighted quote from each.
One of the great sins in cross-cultural living is non appreciation. But genuine love for people will mean that you cannot dismiss or discount their world.
A cross-cultural God-adventurer is like a whale. We dive deep and travel long distances, far from the eyes of our peers back home.
In which we take Richard Lewis’ business-world model for understanding various cultures and bend it to contextual theology.
As our family prepared to move we spoke to many people, read books, assimilated much knowledge in a short time. What stayed with us were a few pithy axioms.
Can’t go over it. Can’t go under it. Got to go through it.
When seeking to communicate God’s word through storying, knowing some context is everything.
How many cross-cultural workers relate to Peter? He heard Jesus say “Come,” climbed out of the boat, and started to walk on the water.
I don’t know who was first to think it, but Jacob was first to say it. As an expert herdsman, he recognised the essential shepherding functions…
Isaiah 49:1-6 is “The Song of the Arrow.” It speaks to those in the season of preparation, between beginning to feel stirred to go, and getting on a plane.
Some of us are faith people. Sprinters. Some are patience people. Marathoners. To relocate a family, learn a language and plant a church requires both.