Five years ago, at the beginning of our first time in Japan, we accidentally bought a strange mayonnaise and mystery meat sandwich for breakfast due to our inability to read the package. We also went to the wrong places at the wrong times, inconvenienced others, and bought other strange items by accident thanks to our Japanese skills.
This time, we arrived understanding Japanese better, yet we still make mistakes. We have taken the wrong amount of medicine, turned in documents at the wrong time, and continue struggling to understand the main points during the Sunday morning sermon. When someone asks us to pray before a meal, we feel helpless to express ourselves and praise God with our limited Japanese. Living in a culture that speaks a different language is humbling.
More than all of that, living here is exactly where God placed us. We have weaknesses. We make mistakes. We become embarrassed. We have our pride shattered repeatedly. Through all of this, God’s strength, glory, wisdom, sovereignty, mercy, and grace are clearly displayed. Our weaknesses make us strong because God gives us the power to accomplish what He has called us to do. We would not trade that for anything in this created universe.