Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Missionary Training Trip

It's been awesome to spend the last (almost) two months with an awesome set of people. First on the trip was JV Orientation, which was awesome to increase my vision of what God is doing in E. Europe. Then I got to visit Autumn, Sarah, and Patrick from my intern team. After that was my best friend's wedding in FL, and it was great to spend time with them for the week. The last 5 weeks have a been a whirlwind of great relationships at MTI (Mission Training International) doing the SPLICE (Cultural Adaptation, Spirutal Prep, Interpersonal Relationships and more) for 3 weeks and PILAT (How to learn "acquire" a language) for the last two.

SPLICE was an especially helpful experience for me, and it's hard to boil down all that God did in me through this program. We learned about adjusting to culture while seeking to understand it as well as addressing interpersonal issues and spiritual growth. The people in these pictures are headed to the four corners of the world, and several are headed to E. Europe with JV. They really are a great group of people. Here's a few things I learned: My conflict style and how to handle conflict, how to observe a culture and withhold judgement, how to rest better, handling grief/loss, and how to properly say goodbyes.

PILAT (Language module) helped me to gain a renewed excitement to learn Czech and taught me new strategies in learning. We spent two weeks in this program with many of the same people as in SPLICE, and a few new couples and families. While I initially went in not expecting to learn much, those expectations were blown away after the second day. Though it was less relational than SPLICE, it was still a great time to continue those relationships and mix things up a bit. I've learned how to direct my own learning in Czech and to make some of my lessons fun. I've got a simplistic foundation in Czech that I now know how to build on. I'm pumped to go to the field!