Patience: Living in a Foreign Country

I love living here in Argentina. That is not to say that I love everything, but I do love it here. The people are warm and friendly. The food is delicious. We have four seasons here, and three of them are beautiful (I am not a huge fan of winter). With all the great things I love about this country, I do find the need for patience to live here, or anywhere else that is not the country you grew up in. Why? Because things are different, not bad, not wrong, not backwards, just different. But those differences can really be frustrating. You are accustomed to a specific way of life, a specific order, a specific way things are done, and when they are done in a completely different way it causes frustration. This build up of frustration is commonly known as “culture shock”. I have seen it in others and I have certainly experienced it myself. I have learned (and am learning) that patience is needed when living in a foreign country.
I want to make clear again that I love living here, even in the frustrating moments when it seems like something that should be relatively simple is incredibly difficult. That is where patience comes in. But this frustration has pushed me into trusting the Lord more and more. That is what patience does, it causes you to wait on the Lord. Patience can be an expression of confidence that God is going to bring His will to pass. What a shame to go through some type of frustration but not growing in patience and therefore not growing closer to Jesus! This is a unique opportunity we have as foreigners and I hope God continues to work in me as I grow in patience, trusting Jesus through it all! May we all grow in patience, trusting our God is in control.

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