Casual Advent Friday

Dec 8, 2017 | Blog, Casual Friday

Keeping it on the light side this week since everyone is busy, I’m sure. But the needs on the mission field don’t take a holiday, so here are your weekly resources to help you care well for your global worker friends.



Spiritual warfare is a reality, and it is often more recognizable and more intense on the mission field. Those of us from Western societies may not see what our African brothers and sisters see all-too-clearly. With that in mind, the folks at Lausanne have drafted this paper to help open our eyes.


So this is what burnout looks like. That’s how Ruth titled her recent, very honest, blog post. Good reminders here of what to look for if burnout is suspected. Also great example of how to deal with it.

What if we could be healthy? Physically, mentally, emotionally. Not “okay” in the sense of “hopefully won’t fall apart in the next few months,” but actually well.


God created all of us to live in community. Sometimes that requires a bit of creativity on the mission field, but it is still vital, as Wendy explains in this post. While you’re over there, check out Wendy’s earlier post on the subject.


Patty Stallings talks about the Shepherd of the valley in this thoughtful piece.

What previously gave you joy begins to feel like obligation.  You put forth your best effort to resolve a relational issue and it’s met with heart rendering rejection or prolonged adversity. You work hard. And fail. Influence, favor, health, and resources slip through your fingers.  You, my dear one, are in the wilderness of the valley.

Who do you know who would be encouraged by this?


Recently at a conference I heard Fil Anderson make the statement that “God loves you too much to let you be indispensable.” The world of missions is overflowing with type-A individuals. Overachievers. Or, as Kay Bruner labels them, overfunctioners. Know anyone like that? You might have them read this.



Choosing the right sending agency with which to partner is a big job. If you are involved with someone who is just beginning to look into where they fit, check out this video from Pioneers.



Sylvia Schroeder offers some excellent reminders about how missionaries should interact with their supporters.


It is often assumed that non-white missionary candidates in the U.S. do not have access to adequate funding. Kennex Chi debunks that myth in this article from Support Raising Solutions.



MK retreat, sponsored by Compass Ministries, February 16-18.

Come join us and experience a weekend of deep worship and meaningful connections with your fellow MK/TCKs. Enjoy the beautiful surroundings of Epworth in St. Simon’s Island.


A unique opportunity offered by SentWell in Malaga, Spain.

Adelante is a holistic assessment, training and coaching experience for workers living and serving cross-culturally, who have been in their current context between 1-5 years.


It’s not too early to start making plans for February. In fact, if you don’t start now, this opportunity may get lost in the holiday shuffle. The annual Midwest Conference on Missionary Care will convene February 23-24 in the Minneapolis area. The topic: The promise and peril of team life. You won’t find a better bargain!




If you are providing care for anyone in a cross-cultural marriage, you will find this podcast helpful. (So will they).




Scott Shaum, shepherd to missionaries, recently spoke at the Mental Health and Missions conference on the topic of Mastery and Mystery.

We feel most comfortable discussing and pursuing master. Mystery, though, is another reality altogether…

You can listen to the entire message here. You should also check out Scott’s new book, The Uninvited Companion: God’s Shaping Us in His Love Through Life’s Adversities. I have just received my copy and have begun to devour it. You will find it incredibly helpful.


Have you been following Christina Baird’s musings on the future of missionary care? You should. In this installment she talks about the holistic nature of missionary care as it relates to sending agencies.



Your care may be one of the best gifts a missionary receives this year. Don’t underestimate the value of your input. Until next week…


What I’m reading this week:

  • Comfort Ye My People, by Kay Bruner
  • Messianic Christology, by Arnold Fruchtenbaum
  • Those Who Wait, by Tanya Marlow
  • Touching Wonder, by John Blase
  • The Emotionally Healthy Woman, by Gerri Scazzero (reading with my wife)
  • Winston S. Churchill: World in Torment: 1916-1922, by Martin Gilbert
  • The Uninvited Companion, by Scott Shaum

Just finished reading:

  • The Birth, by Gene Edwards
  • Seeker of Stars, by Susan Fish
  • Cosmic Christmas, by Max Lucado
  • The Innkeeper, by John Piper

Up next:

  • Consider Your Calling, by Gordon Smith
  • Emotionally Healthy Leaders, by Peter Scazzero
  • Living Far Away, by Esther Abbott
  • Moving Far Away, by Esther Abbott



  1. Patty Stallings

    Thanks, Dave, for faithfully compiling resources each week. And thank you for the honor of being included. Blessings!

  2. Dave

    You are quite welcome, Patty. I always appreciate your articles.