Even if we do not get a chance to live abroad, it is important that we make an effort to learn about other countries and cultures. The more well rounded we are, the more understanding we will be with people who might seem different to us. When we make an effort to learn a different language and use it with a native speaker of that language, then we will realize how hard it is for others to communicate with us, and we will become more appreciative of their efforts. Even if we only learn a little bit and even if we feel like a fool when we are trying to speak, people will appreciate our efforts. We must not be afraid to learn other languages; it will open many frontiers for us. It will break the ice between us and the people from that special country we visit. We will win over their hearts. I guarantee you they will be more candid with us and more willing to help.
When we make an effort to look beyond our frontiers and really pay attention, we become more sensitive to the rest of the world. And we become more aware that we are not just what we know; we are part of a much greater thing. This allows us to become more compassionate and more involved with the world in general. It allows us to become more sensitive and more grateful. It allows us to understand that we are part of a greater plan. As a result, we will experience interior growth, and our minds will expand. We will be fairer in our opinions about a certain country or about a foreigner who is struggling to succeed and survive in our country. We might also decide to become missionaries and go to serve the Lord in a faraway land. Missionaries serve God while learning firsthand what a beautiful world God has made.
The fact that we don’t see something doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist; it also doesn’t mean that it is not important, and can not be significant to us. It is up to us to take an interest and to learn about what is out there for us. It is our choice to open our minds and hearts, not only to the beauty of our country or our continent but to the beauty of the whole world God has created for us.
Wisdom to contemplate:
“ It happens that there are many different languages in the world, and none is meaningless; but if I do not know the meaning of a language, I shall be a foreigner to one who speaks it, and one who speaks it a foreigner to me.”
(1 Corinthians 14:10-11)
“He said to them, ‘Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature.’” (Mark 16:15)
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.” (John 3:16)