What makes people rearrange their lives to study at a place like Eastwest College? We asked two Kiwi families to share why they made the step, and why they’re going back for more!
Andrew & Raewyn’s Story
Planning for long term missions service usually follows a familiar pattern – Bible and mission training, discernment, joining an agency, more preparation and then finally departing. Our journey was nothing like that. You could say we’ve done everything backwards!
With minimal training we left these shores to oversee a hostel for missionary children in Thailand. We loved it. We returned home after four wonderful years with a clear plan for further training. One thing we’re now certain of is long term mission involvement requires more than a clear calling. It also demands well-tailored, cross cultural Biblical and mission training.
We left behind a land of incredible beauty, amazing people, food, and adventures. But we couldn’t have returned to a better place. We continue to live in community, learning cultural lessons with Biblical principles that our time in Thailand didn’t allow. Best of all, our vantage point now, with fresh experience and a good dose of reality, means we ask questions and dig in ways that maybe some of our peers don’t.
Sure, nothing beats real life cross cultural mission experience, but we’re confident that Eastwest College is almost the real thing. We wouldn’t return overseas without the best training possible, and we think we’ve found it. Maybe this backwards approach wasn’t such a bad plan after all.
After 20 successful years in my career I found myself at a crossroads. I was feeling an increasing dissatisfaction with my “normal life”; the pursuit of material things and other cultural values were becoming passé. At the same time, my desires to further understand God’s plans were growing.
Following a season of cupboard prayer, and discussing the possibilities with Sarah, it got to the point where God was saying, “Jump!” So we put the house on the market, I gave in my notice, and so began this faith adventure.
I’ve always loved meeting new people and learning about other cultures. I think God placed this in me as a way to begin to understand His heart for the nations.
My first year at Eastwest College was invaluable – gleaning from the wisdom and stories of fantastic tutors, wrestling with ideas and scripture, growing in faith as I saw God at work in this multicultural community, and allowing all areas of my life to be challenged.
College life is building a foundation of useful tools and disciplines that I can take into the future. It’s also an investment towards discovering the possibilities in mission for my family. I so appreciate their support and God’s great provision. Maybe Eastwest should be on your radar too! See here for details.