The Battle of the ‘Unfamiliar’ (Re-visited)
I posted something about this topic over a year ago, but I felt it’s relevant to share my view about the unfamiliar.
How do you find purpose in the unfamiliar when you have to battle with a lot of obstacles?
Acceptance and adapting are the major obstacles in the unfamiliar especially if there are communication barriers. My, my, my…that’s hard.
These were my questions:
How do I adapt to the language norm in the first place and overcome culture shock? How do I modernise my attitude and character to avoid being misunderstood? Why do I look like an intruder? Everyone seems different, and I can’t find anyone to understand the language of my heart that yearns so much to belong if given a chance. Why would God bring me in such a place where I can’t locate anyone from my clique? Everything was different, so very different that it frightened me to take a step.
So I learnt these three lessons:
The unfamiliar threatens your ability to speak and interact with people. It limits you from connecting with the community. It pulls you back anytime you want to take the step forward in meeting new people and reminds you that you don’t belong. It restricts you from socialising with the unknown environment. It holds you back and keeps you in a cabin called ‘fear and insecurity’. It goes like this, ‘will I be accepted? Will they understand my accent? What if I get rejected? But I don’t look like them. What if they don’t like me?’
Can I tell you something? ‘What ifs’ questions will always hold you back from setting initiatives and taking actions. Whether you get liked or not is not a reason for you to worry. It’s how do I make use of this season and fulfil God’s purpose for my life. How do I maximise myself and my God-given talents to impact this environment? How do I break off the limitations that surround me, and pull down every barrier that seems to lock me up in this space call fear and insecurity?
The egg and cocoon stage may look uncomfortable and limiting, but there is no way the caterpillar can turn into a butterfly if she skips those trends.
The cocoon period is the development and transformation stage; it is when the caterpillar gets isolated in an unfamiliar environment, looking strange and limited. That is how we feel when we find ourselves in the unknown, away from comfortable. But instead of throwing tantrums and getting all worked up, the caterpillar knows within her, that the only way she can get to the butterfly stage where she can fly without limit and fulfil her purpose, is to accept the new setting. She learns how to adapt to her new cocoon environment and go through the process of growth, development and expansion that will transform her into a butterfly in the not too far future. However, she will never turn into a caterpillar if she stays in the egg. And she will never discover the potential hidden in her to become a beautiful butterfly if she remains in the cocoon trying to reason why she finds herself in that space and refusing to break out at the right time.
In my situation, I had to push myself out in the open, force my entire being to break off the shell of fear and pierce into the very depth of this unfamiliarity. Otherwise, the obstacles were going to dim my vision and paralyse my purpose. I figured out that my situation was not going to change unless I get up, step out and take action. It doesn’t matter what people say or think. Whether people understand you or not, you are already there, and there’s no turning back. You’ve come too far to turn back and give up. That’s not part of God’s plan for you. You’ve gone through a lot of sacrifice in the process of getting there, so it’s not the time to call it quit. The caterpillar didn’t halt in the egg or the cocoon; she went all the way to become a butterfly.
God brought you to that environment for a reason, and He will surely make a way. You don’t have to worry about what people say or how they’ll react to you because people will always have something to say. Whether you’re accepted or not, that’s irrelevant, because you are in a place to fulfil your purpose for that season. Hence, let nothing move or distract you. Stay focus and be ON COURSE! You are in line with destiny.
The caterpillar Metamorphoses into a butterfly by going through the developmental process in the cocoon. Your unfamiliar might be the cocoon environment that will metamorphose you into that glorious future God has beautifully chiselled for you.
So I challenge you to arise out of fear and insecurity, and take-off into the wings of your destiny, discover and work on your talents and let them blossom into greatness as you fulfil your God-ordained purpose in that unfamiliar place.
See with the eyes of FAITH and let that obstacle be an opportunity to propel you into achieving outstanding accomplishments.
You are a child of purpose!
How do you see yourself in that unfamiliar environment?
Comments are welcome.