What the heck am I doing here?
This was the major theme of the thoughts running through my head when I found myself in a room smaller than my bathroom had been. Now granted, I had an abnormally large bathroom with a walk in closet attached, but still. No bedroom should be smaller than your bathroom. And this was a room I would share with two other girls in a dorm of forty much younger girls.As a burnt out special education teacher, I was desperate for anything different. At this point, I was wondering if maybe I was too desperate. I wanted to do the Crossroads Discipleship Training School (CDTS) because it was specifically for people with more life experience. I knew I was being redirected into something different, and I was also excited about not having to be “in charge” for awhile. Typically, anything I signed up for in life I seemed to quickly be put in leadership. I needed a break from that.
“How can you be a missionary if you don’t really like people?” asked one of the young girls sharing a dorm with me.
“I’m not sure,” I said, at the same time realizing how ridiculous I sounded. “But I think whatever it is, it will look really different.” Something I had learned in my self discovery journey was that I was an extreme introvert. It’s not that I hated people or lacked social skills ~ I just didn’t really want to be around them all the time because social activity drains me.
That brief conversation really threw me off. How can an extreme introvert be a missionary? Abby has a really good point.
Father? What am I here for?
I had to remind myself almost daily that I knew I was supposed to be here. Thankfully, my roommate was also full of life experience, and we were both being redirected in our lives. My roommate became a precious friend, which I didn’t expect. Her humor, care, and wisdom were part of restoring my soul.
One of the first lessons I learned was to relax. For years, I had put pressure on myself and responded poorly to pressure from others to “get stuff done.” I needed a new attitude about work and healthier work habits. This was the most “free time” I had experienced in my adult life. I didn’t get bored, but I used this time to find silence and solitude to refresh my weary soul. I had long walks and talks with the Father processing everything I needed to put behind me and preparing for what he would put in front of me.
I think balancing my need for silence and solitude with a need to connect with other humans was another lesson learned. If I explained I needed a people break, my classmates understood that. It was my responsibility to communicate what I needed. My trust in other humans was restored during this time as my fellow classmates and staff were safe people. That makes it sound weird, but they had no hidden agenda nor selfish veins, and they listened to what I said because they truly cared about me. A double bonus was that I learned some Korean phrases and experienced some delicious new foods.
I know what I came for: to be redirected, refreshed and restored. I just needed to show up. At thirty-two years old, the CDTS gave me a needed fresh perspective. Now, I'm seeking to make God known to the ends of the earth. 😊❤️
Guest Author ~ Written by a former CDTS student who is serving the Lord in a closed nation!!!
This July, YWAM Tyler will be hosting another Crossroads Discipleship Training School. It's not too late to sign up for a five-month course that'll change your life.