For Those Who Like Charts
For those of you who, like me (Clay), like charts, here's a great chart they gave us to understand culture shock (the processing of newness and change) and culture stress (the processing and adaptation over time).
This was really helpful for us to see. We've talked about printing it out and putting it on our refrigerator to track where we are (and validate how we're feeling). This all really makes sense - the first drop is after the new wears off, the second is around the 1-year mark.
This would be a great way to pray for us! They said most mission organizations tell the missionaries that the goal of their first term (usually 2-4 years) is to just survive and not want to quit. Pray that we adjust well, don't get discouraged when things get tough, that the lows would be great times of learning, and that the highs would be exciting and effective.