As we enter the Christmas season, I wanted to look beyond our celebration here in the United States. So, I asked some of our IDEAS Associates how their view of Christmas has changed by living overseas.

Do you have skeletons in your closet? Our Associates in Egypt do, and he even has a name – Max.

Have you ever wondered what it is like to be a first-year, first grade teacher in your first year overseas? Read how one IDEAS volunteer is learning to thrive in the classroom and navigate a new culture and community!

I just had one of those uncomfortable moments with one of my adult children.  I asked about doing something that concerned his family, got a negative nonverbal reaction, and because of time, we didn’t get it figured out.  All day long my mind has been exploring reasons why my request elicited that response.  

Can I love my enemies and pray for those who persecute me?

For Christians and many others in Lebanon, the answer to this question can be difficult and complex.

We bounced along for hours over a rough road in the mountains of rural China.  A local friend had arranged for us to spend the day with his wife’s family who lived in a home made of packed mud perched on the side of a steep slope.

The expat life has many benefits, but one of the hardest challenges is being far from family. This can be felt the most when you hear of someone who is sick, receives a bad medical prognosis, or is in an accident. Living in a foreign country is hard when a loved one is dying.

“Do not despise the time of preparation.”  I didn’t fully embrace this advice shared with me some seven years ago by a friend who had received it herself from a mentor.


 

For the past three and a half years our family has been living in the city of Beirut, and working with marginalized people groups in different parts of the country of Lebanon. Whilst the news about countries in the Middle East do not paint a hopeful picture for people in this part of the world, our hearts fill up with excitement to see the different ways God is ...

At IDEAS, we talk about leveraging our professional skills to restore hope in communities around the world. Three years ago, IDEAS introduced the short-term trip option that allows many professionals the opportunity to be involved in a small way towards the bigger picture.  I just returned from East Asia where I saw love and hope at work in a short amount ...