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A Different Kind of Normal: A REACH Update

By Shontel, Team Indochina

I expected my life in another country to feel extraordinary in some way, but I’m learning that life here feels just as normal as life in the United States.

Take today as an example. I woke up at 6:30. Before breakfast, I sat outside and spent time speaking to my father and reading. Then I got ready for language school. Breakfast was a bagel and fruit. My team left the house at 8:00 in time to catch our ride to school. After class, we walked to get lunch at a nearby restaurant. Once lunch was finished, we walked home and spent the afternoon playing games together, socializing with our landlord and grocery shopping. Before dinner, we walked to a nearby school to organize and take inventory in a kindergarten classroom. I cooked dinner at home. After dinner, we played games and watched a video sermon, then stayed up late talking.

Now that you have read that summary, maybe you will agree with me that life here is ordinary, normal. Even though I am living in a country halfway across the world where everything is dusty, roadside shops seem to be the main employment, palm trees grow outside my window, and the natives speak a language I am only beginning to learn, daily life here doesn’t feel out of the ordinary. It’s refreshing and exciting being in a culture that is new to me, yet feeling comfortable in it. Everyday life has its differences here, but it’s simply a different kind of normal.

“…the father has been showing me that it doesn’t take adventurous, unique, or once-in-a-lifetime circumstances for him to work. He’s made himself known in the ordinary…” Through this realization, the father has been showing me that it doesn’t take adventurous, unique, or once-in-a-lifetime circumstances for him to work. He’s made himself known in the ordinary – through providing kind and gracious natives to buy food from, even when we mangle the language and don’t understand bartering. He has blessed us with health, though we are always trying new foods. In the midst of many adjustments, he’s prepared many people to walk beside us, giving us culture tips. When we were struggling to reach out to locals, he brought them to us. It is encouraging to see that in the little things, he is faithful.

Today I read this, “From him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever!” Amen to that!


Please continue to keep the REACH teams in your thoughts, praying they can seek opportunities to spread love and joy every day, even in the ordinary.

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