Imagine living with 6 siblings in the same room, only you are all adopted from different nations…oh! And it’s the first time you’ve ever met. Yup, that’s YWAM.
During my Discipleship Training School, I had roommates from England, America, Canada, South Africa, Brazil, and Denmark, and boy did I come to the realization of just how different God made every one of us. He is so creative! All I need to do is look at my remarkably diverse friends around me to see how infinite His imagination is.
Since joining YWAM, my eyes have been opened to what is “normal.” Guys, nothing is ever “normal.” Normality is the state of being usual, typical, or expected, but that is based completely on your exposure to the conforming patterns around you.
Breaking my perception of what is ordinary has allowed me to embrace other people’s traditions and view them as a gained experience instead of something that is uncomfortable or bizarre. Acquiring this attitude of acceptance has prepared the platform for grace and love to flow freely within my relationships.
I would say “Professional Apologizer” is a job title most people obtain as a result of communal living, and if you don’t, well then “Culturally Ignorant” is the title you will receive, instead. I mean, offense is a person’s choice, but the reality is that at some point you’re going to tip somebody off–it’s inevitable.
In my experience, informing somebody that I am making an effort to do what is culturally correct makes a HUGE difference. Owning the mistake and learning from it shows that whether you are being culturally respectful or not, at least you are trying.
All this to say, having six roommates from six different countries is definitely hard work, but soooo worth it. I am grateful for all of my international friends and have LOVED getting to know their unique national traditions. Participating in a Discipleship Training School has expanded my view of “normality,” and given me a greater appreciation for God’s vast creativity and love for culture.
Brielle (USA), completed her DTS here at YWAM Lausanne in May of 2017 and will be staffing our upcoming Outdoor DTS this Summer!
Check out our Outdoor DTS here!
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