A Salt and Light Kind of Influence

Dubai is listed as one of the most influential cities in the world. It’s easy to see the influence that various cultures have had by simply looking at the architecture landscape of Dubai’s buildings, the array of food served in restaurants and hotels, the various events that pop up around the city, and even in the way people dress and interact with each other. All of which can be attributed to the people that inhabit Dubai.

Over 86 percent of the nationalities living in Dubai are foreign born, a diversity that is almost unparalleled in other cities around the world. From Singapore to India, Britain to Finland, South Africa to the U.S., Australia to Japan and everywhere in between, the people of various visiting countries have influenced the way Dubai citizens live their lives.

Most expats moved to Dubai for a better job opportunity. We were offered a chance to move up in our career, to establish ourselves financially to give our families a new start, the adventure of a lifetime, and the opportunity to experience life in a different position – a position of influence. 

Whatever our situation, we would have never considered our “opportunity” strategic in any way with regards to being Christian; especially being Christian in Dubai. In this sense we could look at a group of people who wouldn’t have considered their existence strategic with regards to their beliefs either – the early church of first-century Christians.

Today, we associate Rome with the Catholic Church, but if you could go back in time and tell first-century Christians living in Rome that their city would one day be full of ornate crosses celebrating Jesus, they wouldn’t believe you. They lived in an environment hostile to their faith. People around them considered them members of a strange cult. They faced intense persecution.

The emperor Nero falsely accused them of setting the Great Roman Fire of 64 AD and punished them by crucifying them and feeding them to dogs. The apostles Peter and Paul were martyred during Nero’s persecution. Yet by the third century, Christianity had grown into the official religion of Rome. Thankfully, we personally live in a city that has a great appreciation for a variety of faiths.  Nevertheless, we are surrounded by a region that feels extremely similar. How then did such a hated, powerless people become so influential?

In his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said some surprising things that reveal what he thought about power and influence. He lists a number of qualities that he associates with being blessed: those who are poor in spirit, mourn, and are meek; those who hunger and thirst for righteousness; those who are merciful and pure in heart; those who are peacemakers; those who are persecuted because of righteousness or are insulted because of their faith in him (Matthew 5:3–10).

None of what Jesus said made much sense to people living in first-century Rome. In their world, might made right. Women, children, the elderly, and the sick had no voice. Generosity wasn’t a virtue. Human life had little value. Yet within a few centuries, the followers of Jesus turned the Roman Empire upside down.

Jesus used two word pictures that explain how his followers, living on the margins of Roman society, changed their world. His metaphors were a call to his followers to live world-changing lives. Though they had no standing in the culture in which they lived, their lives would be the last stand.

“You are the salt of the earth” (Matthew 5:13a).

Salt is a preservative; it prevents food from rotting. Jesus was calling his followers to be the preservative of the entire earth. Though their world was falling down around them, first-century Christians lived out a kind of mercy, purity of heart, and righteousness that found worth in those that Roman society thought worthless. They demonstrated a powerful love that changed the way the world valued human life.

“You are the light of the world. A town placed on a hill cannot be hidden” (Matthew 5:14).

Jesus meant for his followers to light up the world, showing the way to God’s grace. He called them to live in such a way that the people around them would connect the dots between how Christians live and the God they serve.

If you’re a Christian, it’s because someone was salt and light in your life. God put them in your life at just the right time. When you look back on your life, those people were “towns on a hill,” showing you the way to God’s grace. Their persistence may have been a little irritating, but their love changed your life.

You have a chance to influence those around you during your time in Dubai with that same love and grace.  It’s a transient city, ever changing, with people coming and going from all around the world.  We have an opportunity wherever we are, in our workplace, in our neighborhoods, even on the roads in our cars, to be salt and light and help people connect what we do to the God we serve. We can be salt and light to the people of Dubai. Two things that Dubai’s culture absolutely loves when you think about it. Who is one person for whom you can be salt and light this week?

ReSolution: Something to Show For It

Another year, another set of resolutions – promises we make ourselves that we swear to uphold for as long as possible. Isn’t that always the case for most of us? With the coming of a fresh new year, it seems like we can’t help ourselves from declaring to the world that “this is it, it’s going to be my year; I will make good on all my past mistakes and make my future better.” We tend to promise things like losing weight, decreasing debt, learning new things, or going to church more frequently – and whether you decide to go to a non-denominational church in Dubai or otherwise, all these “promises” boil down to one thing, and that is an urge to improve one’s self.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with self-improvement – and granted at times it can even help in the long run – but it’s also important to note that there are bigger things out there as well. While concentrating on one’s self seems like a natural thing to do, why not consider making promises this year that can help others instead?

Look around you – at your friends, your family, your neighbourhood, and your community – and try to spot things that need to be done. Ask yourself, “How can I help?” Or better yet, ask yourself “What breaks my heart?”

This is undoubtedly a difficult thought to muster an answer for, but the moment you do, you start to realize that everyone around you has needs of their own that you can’t do anything about and that you can’t fix all the wrongs of the world; while it may be disheartening to know that you can’t help everyone, take comfort in the fact that you can help someone. It might not be much, but there’s a reason why people don’t help as much as they can in the first place – because helping takes time, and money, and resources – some of which people deem to be better off spent on themselves. This is where self-improvement becomes a bit of an issue.

The problem with us humans is that we have an inherent sense of self-preservation; we’re naturally wired to think of ourselves and our kin more than we think of others. That’s not to say this trait is all bad, but it’s not all good either – because (and this according to Andy Stanley) “whoever devotes themselves to themselves will have nothing but themselves to show for themselves“, and the unfortunate truth is that most of the time we – as we are, no matter the degree of self-improvement we engage ourselves in – simply are not enough.

In order to follow Jesus, we must learn to discard this aspect of our humanity. Instead of always searching for self-improvement, instead learn to engage yourself in self-denial – that is, deny your urges that center on yourself and learn to submit yourself to another’s command. Jesus’ to be exact.

Giving to gain life

Why, then, submit yourself to Jesus? This is because he offers you a way to save you from yourself – he can pull you out of that seemingly infinite cycle of selfishness and self-centeredness.

Luke 14:25-27 says:

“Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters – yes, even their own life – such a person cannot be my disciple. And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”

To be his disciple (and true follower), one had to be able to deny themselves; they had to submit themselves to Jesus and allow him to call the shots of their lives. Those in the crowd who followed him realized there was more to discipleship than simply following him around; it was also about allowing Jesus to be the supreme authority in their lives. By doing that, they gave their lives to something bigger – something more than themselves. It gave them purpose. By giving their lives to Jesus’ cause they gained more life in themselves – giving them fulfilment no amount of self-improvement could ever achieve.

Live a life of purpose

Purpose is an important aspect of life as it drives us to an end goal other than ourselves. It gives us something to do that actually matters. Nowadays, it’s so easy to get caught up in the troubles that come with daily life; most of the time we concern ourselves with no more than our bodies and our finances. In the end, though, if that’s all that we’ve accomplished then we’ve accomplished nothing.

Finding our purpose, helping others who are already helping, and making the world a better place isn’t so difficult as long as we overcome the initial fear of stepping out of our comfort zone. We must deny ourselves and instead pursue other goals. As Andy Stanley stated:

“If you devote yourself to more than yourself, you will have more than yourself to show for yourself.”

So this year, consider altering your new year’s resolution to improve those around you rather than focusing it on yourself. You’ll find that it’ll give you more self-satisfaction in the long run.

Remember: giving life begets it.

Unity in Diversity: Mosaic Church Dubai as a Non-Denominational Church

In all parts of the world, Faith has always been a major elevating factor in a society in terms of building good social character, connecting relationally and growing spiritually. It is also one of the things that unify each and every one of us. But that may be untrue for some, as religions, despite the good they have brought, have caused a certain level of divide among a lot of people, even those that share the same faith. Non-denominational churches, however, seek to change that usual notion.

Openness in Differences

While religious denominations are subgroups within a religion that follows a set of rules, guidelines, and traditions; non-denominational churches on the other hand, do not have any formal allegiance to a religious organization or denomination. They tend to deviate from specific traditions that religious denominations practice.

Because of non-denominational churches’ lack of obligation to answer to any traditional Christian denomination structure, they are able to provide an environment that fosters open-mindedness towards a broader spiritual belief and acceptance of all spiritual philosophies of the Christian perspective. In addition, they also give off an identity that allows for spiritual independency and institutional freedom. Because its charismatic leaders and the church itself is given the freedom to do things according to the teachings of the Bible without the rules of a religious denomination, it opens up numerous possibilities for creating potential on theological innovation due to its structure and cultural freedom.

As Our Name Suggests

Mosaic Church Dubai is a good example of such a community. True to our name, which means an image that is formed by the assembly of small materials of different sizes and shapes, we are a thriving non-denominational Christian organization in one of the most culturally and racially diverse cities in the world.

Dubai, one of the most beautiful and economically powerful cities in the world and the Middle East, has needed expatriates ever since its boom. Because of this demand, it has become a melting pot of people from all over the world due to its need of expatriates. And we here at Mosaic aim to provide the spiritual needs of these men and women whatever denomination they may be in – or even not at all.

A Mission in Unity

Because of the great ethnic differences of our members, our church embraces racially diverse cultures, providing them a welcoming environment and a socially accepting community under the guidance of God. And with the privilege of established independency, Mosaic Church aims to build a strong community of devoted individuals to spread the love and the teachings of God.

And ultimately, we aim to establish a congregation that is united out of faith in God and love for both Him and our neighbors. As one of our saying goes, “Life is better connected”, for we believe that connecting with other people and building healthy relationships are one of the five things that God uses to help us grow, because you cannot grow spiritually without connecting relationally. By this, we are able to explore truth and support and care for one another through prayer.

Light of the World: Jesus Christ

The Christmas season is upon us, and inevitably, celebrations abound. It’s the one time of year where people can come together with their loved ones and enjoy the festivities, and no matter where they’re from – whether it’s from a non-denominational church in Dubai or a traditional church from wherever else – as long as the belief and joy in Jesus Christ’s birth is present, then fun and togetherness is all but guaranteed.

Unfortunately, this is not true for everybody. While Christmas is customarily known to be a joyous occasion, sometimes certain things prevent us from enjoying it to the fullest – oftentimes, these distractions even go as far as to detract us from the true meaning of Christmas – which is of course, the birth of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ.

The Happening

Christmas can be both a wonderful and terrible affair depending on who you’re with, but that’s just the problem – it shouldn’t be that way. Ideally, this season should be enjoyable, after all, Jesus Christ brings everyone along. However, sometimes the moment we get together with our friends and family, instead of being ecstatic and looking forward to the time we’ll finally get to spend with them, we end up feeling like we have to “deal with them” instead.

Our supposedly joyous thoughts are clouded with the problems they’ve brought with them, how we can’t control their actions and prevent conflict, or even how they set expectations we can never meet. But if one looks closely, the problem actually lies in us ourselves – we’re the ones who bring up our own problems, we’re the ones who can’t control ourselves, and most especially – we’re the ones who set expectations others can’t meet.

That said, we have to learn not to center this event on ourselves and the people around us. We have to stop concentrating so much on what’s happening, but rather, we must focus our attention more on what happened – again, the birth of Christ – and its significance to the human race.

Centering Life on Jesus

By centering our life on Jesus instead of the scattered happenings around us, we end up centralizing on something stable; something that can be counted on. Jesus is hopeful, someone who can give us purpose; He takes away the fears we have. In addition, by centering our life on Him, Christmas becomes much brighter as we are reminded that he is for us, watching over us, celebrating with us.

The darker and more complicated things get, take comfort in the fact that we’re able to focus on the light of the world that makes a sensible difference in each of our lives.

At the start of the new testament, followers like Matthew, Mark, and Luke talk about the birth of Jesus Christ. Curiously, John does not – not directly, anyway. Rather than describe his birth in detail, he describes its significance instead.

John 1:4-5 states that:
In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

Despite living in desperately rough times, John was able to see the light and never lose faith. Early on he was able to realize that Jesus was a kind of life that transcended the physical, which is supported by the following verses:

According to John 20:30-31:
Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

Jesus is the light

Again, Jesus is the reason we celebrate Christmas – not the people around us. He is the bright light in the darkness; no matter what we face – be it strong heart ache, extreme fear, or a deep depression – he will be there to guide us. And no matter how hard the world tries to envelop Him in darkness, He will always shine through; ready to give us hope and a reason to believe; He’s always there to listen to our prayers and He gives us reason to wake up each day and take that next step.

Right in the Eye Part 5: Just Like Gideon

Everybody wants to be extraordinary at what they do, whether it’s writing, business, or ministering for a non-denominational church in Dubai. Not a lot of people, however, want to be extraordinary men and women. It’s understandably difficult, as being extraordinary at what you do and being an extraordinary person are completely different things.

Thankfully, God is always more than willing to empower us and turn us into extraordinary individuals who can make a positive impact on the lives of those around us.

Extraordinary Reasons

But why be extraordinary in the first place? Why go the extra mile so that you can excel at everything you do and how you treat others if you can live comfortably despite refusing to do so anyway? After all, it is a lot of hard work and hassle to put a lot more effort in what you do and who you are. That’s because if you have a Christian worldview, then you should believe that all of us are created in the image and likeness of God. Since we have been made that way, it’s only right that we achieve our full potential and treat each other the best way we can.

It’s not an easy feat, but as what was previously said, with God’s help, it can be done. That is very much true in the life of Gideon.

Me, A Mighty Warrior? Yes!

Gideon lived in the time when the Israelites were being oppressed by the Midianites, people who lived close to Israel. This oppression, which was so severe because the Midianites ruined crops and killed livestock, was allowed by God to happen because the Israelites were being unfaithful, as they were worshipping the same false idols this enemy of theirs has.

The only one who can save God’s people from this scourge is Gideon. God came to him, called him a great and mighty warrior, and told him that he was chosen to free the Israelites from the Midianites. Gideon, however, did not believe God, as he was a weak man from the weakest clan of the weakest tribe. But after asking God for signs and three miracles, he obeyed God, fulfilled what God has called him as – a great and mighty warrior, and destroyed the Midianites.

Just Like Gideon

There is no doubt that Gideon’s story is amazing; don’t you wish that you can be just as amazing as him? Well, you can. Just like Gideon, no matter how many and great your flaws may be, you can be extraordinary with God’s help.

If he, a weak man from the weakest clan of the weakest tribe in all of Israel, was a great and mighty warrior, then we can also be great in the things we choose to do. No matter lowly we think of ourselves are, through His grace and power, we can be the greatest versions of ourselves.

We were made to be extraordinary, just like Gideon, and just like the one true God who created us. So, what are you waiting for? Don’t start being extraordinary tomorrow; start now.

Right in the Eye: A Strong Man’s Weakness

What do you do when your body tells you to do something your heart tells you is wrong? Which one do you follow? Let’s be honest – for a lot of us, when the two are locked in a struggle, it’s the body that wins. That, however, shouldn’t be the case, as decisions in life that involve this conundrum will either make or break you.

Even pastors from a non-denominational church in Dubai understand that it’s never an easy battle, but it has to be won. After all, sex is one of the greatest things that affects our lives.

It’s Just That

But it’s just sex, right? One hour, one night, one weekend – how could it have that much of an impact in your life? You may not know or understand how, but choosing wrongly can cost us our rightful destiny as great men and women. A good example of this would be Samson.

Besides Being The Strongest

Samson is a popular character from the Bible. In fact, his story is one of the most favorite, recognizable, and popular story there is. But most of the people who are familiar with his tale only know that he is an unbelievably strong man who defended the Israelites against the Philistines until he was betrayed by Delilah and died along with his enemies; only a few remember the details of his birth and how his amazing strength came to be.

Samson was a son to Manoah, a man from the tribe of his wife. And just like many important figures in biblical history, he was born to a couple who find it hard to bear a child. Thankfully, Manoah’s wife was visited by an angel of God, telling them that they will have a son who is destined to deliver the Israelites from the Philistines. Manoah’s wife, however, had to take a Nazirite vow – this meant abstaining from alcoholic beverages, cutting one’s hair, and the refusal to touch anything dead. She abided by it, thus Samson was born.

As he grew up, Samson fought against the Philistines, and has prevailed over them time and again because of his immense strength which came from the Nazarite vow he had to take as long as he live. But even the strongest man is still a man, and the greatest weakness of man is a woman.

Enchanted and Enfeebled

Before Delilah, Samson’s ultimate downfall, he already had a liking for Philistine women. At that time, the Israelites were forbidden to marry anyone who is not of their tribe, as it would “dilute” the worship of God with that of false idols. Samson did not adhere to this, so in went Delilah. He loved her, but he did not know that she was sent by the Philistines to lure Samson and bring him to them.

We all know how the story goes – she succeeded, and it’s all because Samson, Israel’s strongest man, a devout follower of God who abided by the Nazarite vow until his hair was cut by Delilah, chose the wrong love, the wrong woman. He didn’t guard his heart and his body, so he met his doom. Though he was restored by God, as he was able to destroy the temple he was being sacrificed in and took with him thousands of Philistines, he could’ve lived longer and done greater things if he did what was right.

Samson’s life and feats were nothing short of astounding, so much so that people who know him want to be like him. But nobody wants to end up like him, betrayed and shamed. Therefore, let us learn from his example and be wise when choosing between what our body and our heart is telling.

Filling the Gap: Trust and Suspicion

Trust is a very important issue every person in an organization – whether it’s a corporate enterprise or a non-denominational church in Dubai – must have. However, not a lot of people are applying this trust right, as it is usually misunderstood or too easily defeated.

In order for you to know what it’s truly like to be trusting of your coworkers, your superiors, as well as your subordinates, it’s important that you know more about what the word truly means first.

Expectations, Reality, and Disappointments

There will always come a time when the people within your organization will fail to deliver what is required and expected of them. Whenever they do, there will be a gap between our expectations and the reality of their failure.

As coworkers, superiors, or subordinates, whether unconsciously or purposely, we fill that gap with things that can erode our confidence in that person, and in turn the entire organization. Thankfully, there is one thing that we can fill the gap with and instead strengthen the person to not do the same mistake again, and ultimately help build up the group. That would be trust.

Suspicions

The problem with us, however, is that we are not ones to readily give away trust, so instead we fill the gap with suspicion. This causes us not to believe any reasons the person who has failed us says no matter how valid and supposedly understandable they may be.

It’s not that people choose to not believe in others; it’s just that they have been raised to be untrusting of those around them. It could be because their caregivers or authority figures when they were young weren’t trustworthy, because they just happen to be untrustworthy by nature, or because they do not believe that a particular person is not worth their trust because he has failed before, or even worse – do not trust them to begin with.

And since they fill the gap with suspicion, the organization becomes a lot more vulnerable to collapse, as there will be people that you will choose not to believe in.

Filling the Gap: Trust’s 3 Commitments

Therefore, instead of filling the gap with suspicion, like what most of us automatically do, we should fill it with trust. And when you do, you need to keep in mind these three things:

You Choose to Trust:

When you choose to trust, you choose to believe in a person. And when you believe in a person, you empower him or her to do the right thing.

Come to That Person’s Defense:

When what the person you trusted delivered less than what is expected of him or her, you should directly ask that person what happened, as proof of the trust you bestowed upon him or her.

Confront the Person:

If the person has been repeatedly failing the trust he or she has been granted, it’s only right that you confront that person in order to restore that trust.

Trusting is never an easy task, but it is an important one if an organization is to thrive. After all, people don’t expect to rely on anyone that isn’t trusted, and at the same time they don’t wish to support anyone who doesn’t trust them.

Giving Honest and Sincere Appreciation for People

Some people fail to realize that without the people around them, they wouldn’t be able to reach the heights they are in now, and they wouldn’t have the many things they are enjoying. Now ask yourself: are you one of these people? Well, let’s assume that you’re not, you’re probably just  finding it difficult to express your gratitude to them.

If that’s your problem, then don’t worry. Non-denominational churches in Dubai or anywhere else in the world, seminars, leadership workshops, or just your trusted friend and counsel have emphasized how important it is to let other people know that you appreciate everything that they’ve done for you. Follow these tips and you’ll be able to make everyone who gave you their time, attention, and love feel important.

Write a Note

If you can’t seem to put into spoken words the sense of appreciation welling deep in your heart because you were never an affectionate person to begin with, then that’s okay because you can always write down what you feel. It doesn’t have to be a deep and elaborate poem – a note should be more than enough. And don’t sweat it too much with the words, the grammar, or the penmanship – what matters is the thought and the sincerity.

Do Something For Them

“You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” – an age-old maxim that is used by anyone who is in a mutually beneficial relationship. Family, friends, and romantic partners, well, you’re technically in mutually beneficial relationships with them too, but they’re not exactly bonds built on exchanges of favors. Nevertheless, since these people have done a lot of good in your life, it’s only right that you do the same for them so that you can show that you are thankful for all those things they’ve done.

It’s up to you how simple or grand the gestures are, because what matters the most is that you’re doing these things from the bottom of your heart.

Lend an Ear

Perhaps one of the most underrated but also one of the greatest things we can do for a person is to listen to him or her. Yes, this is a big deal, because all of us have our own share of problems and sentiments, and keeping them for ourselves can make us feel heavy and suffocated. Thankfully, we have our loved ones to unload all of these baggage, and your loved ones, whom you tell your problems to, consider you as a loved one too. So when they’re telling you about something they’re going through, have an open ear.

Be There

You may not realize it, but you and your company matter to those who you love and love you. They feel lonely when you’re all they have and you’re not there, and they feel sad when everyone they love is there and you’re not.

Of course, doing something for them or telling them how you feel about them sends a clearer message of appreciation across, but being there is always a good place to start to make them feel your gratitude.

What You Got? How To Be Content

It’s never easy to be content, especially if you see that others have more things or have better lives than you. And if you have the means to be just like  those who you envy, then it becomes harder. This is human nature; even if you frequently attend a non-denominational church in Dubai or anywhere else in the world, this will always remain a struggle.

That, however, doesn’t mean it’s impossible. After all, one of the most important concepts of Christianity is overcoming the self, and the self is not one to be easily satisfied. And with that, here are a few steps to help you fight this difficult battle within.

See What’s Important

Before you go off and try to get the same thing you saw from the people around you or an advertisement, try to take a step back first and ask yourself if you really need it or if it will greatly improve your way of life. If it would, then you should go get it. But if it really won’t affect how you live, then it would be best to re-examine your motives why you want to get whatever it is you want to have.

This, of course, is not limited to material possessions. It can also be about career, power, and influence. Ask yourself: in order for me to be happy, do I really need to get so high up in that career ladder? Do I really have to be able to exert pressure on other people? Do I really need to have connections? Only you have the answer to those questions.

The Grass Isn’t Always Greener

It’s natural for us to compare ourselves with other people, especially if we see that they seem to be enjoying life. This becomes even truer whenever we don’t seem to be doing okay ourselves. What we fail to remember, however, is that they are human just like us. They have their own problems, and only they and those around them know how difficult those problems are. After all, people usually tend to keep their struggles private.

Live One Day at a Time

Perhaps you’re not really envious of other people, but instead you’re looking forward to the future a little bit too much, to a time when you think you already have everything you want – or think you want, at least – only to end up realizing that they should’ve learned how to be content in whichever phase of life they are already in.

A lot of people, when they were kids, wanted to grow up so they can have their freedom, only to find out that fending for yourself is much harder than being a kid. They started school eager to graduate so they can already get a job, until they arrive at the world of work and realize that it’s a much harder part of life.

There’s nothing wrong with anticipating what lies ahead. But don’t be too excited with what lies in store for you that you zoom past the present and fail to appreciate it, because you can never go back.

You won’t always have what you want in life. That’s okay though, because the key to being content isn’t getting what you want, but wanting what you got. And to be contented means to be happy.

Life as an Expat in Dubai

It’s never easy to live and work in another country. Because the culture, language, places, and people are not familiar to you, it’s easy to feel isolated and alienated. Such is the life of an expatriate.

The experience of expats in the UAE, however, can be a bit different than the usual ones of those from other countries. Whether they are devout attendees of a non-denominational church in Dubai or a Buddhist, there is one thing they share in common – expat life in the UAE is distinctly colorful.

To illustrate further, here are helpful insights from someone who experienced life as an expatriate in Dubai.

The Experiences of Sergey

Sergey moved to Dubai in August 2011 from Novosibirsk, Russia, bringing along his wife and son, in order to gain the necessary international experience for his career. He now works in an international market research company.

Traffic and Climate

According to him, Dubai is a good and convenient place to live in, as he has yet to experience traffic jams in the city. In addition, he finds the climate nice, as there are no winters, and the beach – a perfect place to visit because of the usually sunny weather – is a five-minute drive away from the city.

The downside to this, however, is that it can get unbearably hot during the summer season, with the temperature rising around 50 degress Celsius. `

The Price of Living in Dubai

When it comes to the cost of living, Sergey doesn’t find Dubai any different than Moscow. For him, he hardly finds any difference between the prices of living spaces between Dubai and Moscow. In fact, he says the apartments in Dubai are even bigger, better, and have more facilities – swimming pool, gym, sauna – as compared to those back in Russia’s capital.

Getting Around Town

Public transportation is also a lot more affordable in Dubai because of the lower prices of petroleum in the Middle East. And not only is it cheap, but also fast, efficient, clean, and convenient. There are taxis almost everywhere, and they are always comfortable and fairly priced. This makes owning a private car almost unnecessary.

Nevertheless, a lot of expatriates buy their own cars, as they take advantage of the lower automobile prices in Dubai. Aside from the fact that they’re cheap, cars can save you ten to thirty minutes of travel time to work, not to mention that it makes traveling to neighboring countries like Oman and Qatar a lot  easier and faster.

The Workplace

With Dubai’s economy on the rise, a lot of industries in the city require a lot of experts, thus the increase in demand for employment. However, just because there are a lot of job openings doesn’t mean everyone will get to land one, as the market is highly competitive. And once you’re already employed, you have to be prepared to work hard and spend long hours for it, which is the norm.

Finally, it’s important to know the nationality and cultural background of those you work with, especially of your superiors, as their work ethics are greatly affected by such things.

The Social Scene

But of course, not everything in Dubai is all about the city itself – the people are just as important, if not more. And according to Sergey, you’ll be spending most of your time dealing with your fellow expatriates which are comprised of hundreds of nationalities, as there are more of them as compared to the local Emiratis who live in Dubai who make up only 5% of the total population.

Despite the many differences expats have, they find it easy to make friends with one another. In addition, there are many spots for socialization such as restaurants, nightclubs, and beaches, where people can not only spend time with their friends but also make new ones.

Dubai is a colorful and exciting frontier that promises both luxury and career growth. Still, it’s no perfect haven, but that doesn’t make the city any less inviting. So, if you’re looking for a melting pot that offers higher heights and exciting sights, this is the city to be.