People have the idea of missionaries as going out with the Bible and hitting natives with it. It's not really what they were doing. They were all doing something rather different.
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I work with the options I have in front of me and my reasons for choosing a job can vary enormously depending on the circumstances. Sometimes I take a job because it's a group of people I'm dying to work with, and sometimes it can be a desire to shake things up a bit and not to take myself too seriously.
If you play a role, you want to familiarize yourself with that person's world. If I were playing an airline pilot or a doctor, I'd probably want to hang out with a doctor or an airplane pilot for a while, ask some questions. You don't get to hang out the kings. They don't help consult on movies. So your resources are, by necessity, secondary.