With my first book due for release in less than a month, I have a confession to make: I never wanted to be a writer. In fact, I don’t think I’m a good one at all. As I type this, I can almost hear hundreds of people across the country collectively muttering under their breath, “Duh.” Well, imaginary detractors, I couldn’t agree with you more.

That said, writing and, more specifically, being published has been something of an obsession for me these past three years. Although it has not been a personal goal for long, I have to admit that I felt like being published might be that one pursuit which, after attaining it, would finally make me fulfilled and content, now and forevermore. And to be sure, I do feel a sense of pride and accomplishment in this moment, especially because this story is so personal to me. But I also feel a confusing and curiously familiar emotion at the same time: disappointment.

This has been the story of my entire life, where I am utterly convinced that some career or relationship or other aspiration is going to satisfy me as a person, only to be disappointed in the end. When I was in high school, the dream was to get into an Ivy League university, a step which would set the rest of my life on its proper course. It only took one semester to realize that all Yale was doing was setting me on the course towards enormous financial debt. But I did meet my wife there, so I suppose it was worth it in the end.

So I pushed my disappointment about college to the side and set my eyes on the next mountaintop: my career. I decided to become a doctor, or even better yet, a missionary doctor. I chose “missionary doctor” because that seemed like the perfect fusion of ...

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Third Culture
Third Culture looks at matters of faith from the multicultural and minority perspective.
Peter Chin
Peter W. Chin is the pastor of Rainier Avenue Church and author of Blindsided By God. His advocacy work for racial reconciliation has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, NPR, and the Washington Post.
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