In October of 2009 I commenced my blog site after encouragement from my “blog mentor” Omar Garcia. As I reflect over the last 365 days of writing I have written 110 blogs (about 2 per week). If my blog were a book, it would be nearly 150 pages long! In all, my blogs were read…
Last week I was visiting a Christian recording studio looking for Cambodian traditional music. They were more than happy to provide me with the latest traditional worship music. During my conversation with the Cambodian studio operator I mentioned to him that I enjoy Cambodian traditional music, but I hardly ever hear it because all the young musicians apparently like to sing Australian “Hillsong” worship music and seem to have little interest in Cambodian culture.
For a missionary to develop an understanding of Cambodian forms and meanings is essential in order to be able to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ effectively. This is done through systematic study of the history, culture and worldview of a nation, but cannot be purely academic.
Even though a person may understand the words you are using, they are substituting the meaning of those words in relation to their own cultural understanding. To be an effective communicator, you have to know and understand both your own culture and receptor culture so that you can assure the message is being communicated effectively.
It is highly likely that wherever you live there are dozens of other ethnic groups from around the world living right next door to you. Communication is crucial. Just because they live near you doesn’t mean they think like you, or you like them. It takes effort to learn to be a good cross cultural communicator. In the following blogs I will give you some issues to think about and some recommendations.