Change is the Only Constant

Wilsons_2013 Posted by Rory Wilson on Tue, 20 Jan 2015 | 0 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to Post this to Facebook

Over Christmas and into the New Year we have enjoyed hosting some dear friends who worked at Kiwoko in recent years. It has been wonderful to see them and hear how God has helped them to re-enter life in the UK and Europe. I remember how much I missed them when they left and how much I hated their absence.

Their presence here has prompted reflections on the changes I have experienced at Kiwoko over the last number of years -new buildings, births, deaths, marriages, promotions, graduations, new staff arriving and then leaving, changing roles and responsibilities….

Where I grew up I saw the same familiar faces in shops, schools, churches, and even if just nodding acquaintances, somehow their presence was a reassuring constant, especially at times when my own life was a bit topsy turvy for whatever reason.

One of the most constant and most difficult aspects of life at Kiwoko is the constant movement of people.

In Kiwoko our community fluctuates, people come for some months, a year, a couple of years and then they leave again, because they have fulfilled a contract, need further training, have some new grandchildren, sick relatives, their children need to re- enter the education system at home or they are sick themselves! It is difficult to keep saying goodbye to people with whom you have shared work, ministry and leisure time.

It is tempting to withdraw and avoid giving too much to relationships when you know that you will have to say goodbye, all too soon. When I am challenged to think like this I consider the staff here at Kiwoko. I am in awe of them as they have watched so many ex-pats come and go, yet they still give of themselves. Opening their homes, sharing their stories, encouraging us, bearing with our inadvertent cultural offences and all the while knowing that at some point they will say goodbye.

I think that I have come full circle in coping with the constant ebb and flow of ex-pats and I am willing to engage with everyone who comes rather than withdraw. This doesn’t prevent the disappointment or in some cases, the grieving for the presence of that person(s) when they leave.

Yet God knows what Kiwoko needs in terms of skills, ministry and personality and new blood is always welcome. It has also been amazing to meet people from all over the world and hear about their life experience. I am humbled by the many wonderful people who have sat around our dinner table with us.

Change is a constant, bitter sweet experience, but it certainly beats stagnation.

I once read somewhere that ‘strangers are friends that you have yet to meet.’ I thank God for everyone who has and will pass through Kiwoko and for all that they have contributed to my life and to the community at large. May God bless You!

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