Monday, October 20, 2014

Breakfast with Glenn

In 2005, as the result of exploring what existing international connections our church already had, I ended up leading a student team to serve and work with Glenn McMahan who lived in Londrina Brasil with his family, there to serve and connect with university students. It was a fantastic experience based on the idea of a culture exchange - two cultures sharing around common cultural elements like film, games, food and such. Many elements of that experience are still paramount to us today including the culture exchange [which we just used this summer], persons of peace and hearing about the result of a decades long friendship [who later gave her life to Jesus], and how people can care about their communities despite differences in cultural context.

Glenn and I have kept in touch over the years and I would jump at the chance to work with him again. He's recently engaged in a new leadership role, helping to engage in both medical initiatives as well as business as mission for a global missions organization. I was thrilled to be able to interact with him this past weekend as well as have him meet two of our three current ProtoGuides. Our conversation included ideas such as:

- shipping containers used as medical clinics, like what we saw in Coney Island
- As an American, Glenn won't be the point person for anything but will be helping resource and support local leaders who are. The indigenous who know best are in charge.
- microbusinesses have a good amount of need for people that can come in and help with business plans, strategy and execution.
- Ebola and how that may change things. Liberia has a ratio of 1 doctor for 77000 people right now.
- We grow your kids to love the world and then we are surprised when they want to leave home...

I loved catching up with Glenn as well as having our ProtoGuides in the conversation. Ember thrives on setting up conversations and connections like these - a well experienced, Gospel centered cross cultural leader sharing some wisdom with passionate, interested emerging global student leaders. Sadly, we forgot a picture with Glenn.