For the first time ever, I was far far away from home; family, friends, church. Being all alone in the United States took its tool on me. Believe me when I say I actually struggled.
Some friends, and even one of my Pastors spoke to me before I left for my trip; ‘Beware, What you’ll see will blow your mind’, they said. And for sure, I was blown away by the way things are ad are done in the U.S.
The Culture shock was a 101%. My first few days and even weeks were depressing. I missed home A LOT and I just wasn’t used to how things are done there.
What I want to share is how I was able to remain in faith and not lose all my home training, lol.
- Keep in touch with home.
When my Pastor was like I would be needing to constantly keep in touch with friends and family in Nigeria, I thought he was being extra. Ha! If you are in an new environment with different values and standards as yours, you’re going to be needing a lot of reminder from home.
Speak to your friends and families about what you are going through and be encouraged by them. It’ll help you in ways you cannot imagine.
My church, Celebration Church International, popularly referred to as CCI, has a platform that encourages people to pray everyday, 30 minutes from 6:00am and same from 8:oopm. So, a person leads devotion while everybody tunes in and pray together along after a short charge. For me, keeping in touch also meant that even if Nigeria was 6 hours ahead of me, I tuned in at every opportunity I got.
However you can, just keep in touch with home.
- Find A Church.
God doesn’t intend for believers to live in isolation. You need to be around people that love the Lord and have the same values and standard as you- The Bible being our ultimate authority.
As a believer, there is only as far as you can go, if you live with unbelievers. Very soon, you’ll find yourself talking like them, thinking like them and eventually doing their stuff.
Yes, you have the holy spirit but you also need the Church.
You need to fellowship regularly and if you are going to have any fun at all in a new environment, you are definitely going to be needing you christian friends- Unless you want to spend months going out alone, it gets boring, lol.
- Wisdom is profitable to direct o.
I worked in an amusement park during the summer. I was actively moving, helping out and talking to people for a minimum of 6 hours 30 Minutes on bad days and 13 hours on most days, 6 days a week ( If I wasn’t making as much money, I would never do such tasking job). So, by the time I get back home, all I want to do is rest. There was no way I would have had extended prayer times and bible studying and all other growth strategies. Exerting that much energy would have actually broken me.
After countless days and even weeks of waiting for the perfect time to pray and study, I had to stop waiting and make do with the time I had.
I took advantage of all the long walks from work, listening to sermons; The times in the bathroom, kitchen or doing laundry, to pray and off days to do more of bible reading and more resting. One of the things I was praying about was what I want to see in this new semester and session and it has been nothing short of amazing! Still in my EXTREMELY busy schedule, I was able to work and finish the designs of my new products that are launching in a bit!
Don’t wait for anything to be right because they might never be, start with what you have.
- Small Small; Never get caught up.
Things are done way differently in the U.S. Their culture gives room for a lot of thingss, lol.
Adopt the positives and for the negatives, don’t forget why they are not our way of life. Remember, your standard for living is not based on where you are or who you are with. The word of God supersedes every culture.
Fight fiercely against being influenced.