Casual First of August Friday

Aug 3, 2018 | Blog

It was great to be in the granite state last week, though I was hoping for weather a bit cooler than it was in southeast Indiana. It is always encouraging to find a church where people want to grow in their understanding of missionary needs and in their capacity to meet them. Resources like these can help you do the same.



There are plenty of times on the mission field that lend themselves to panic. When safety is concerned, that would be the worst option. Even then, some might appreciate the perspective of Anna Hampton’s daughter:

I wish panicking would help!

Read what Dr. Hampton suggests instead. You’ll probably want to circulate this one before the temptation to panic becomes a reality for your friends overseas.


Physical exhaustion is fairly easy to spot; emotional and mental exhaustion are often more difficult to recognize. This article could be quite helpful to your partners serving cross-culturally. It might well help them avoid burnout.


Speaking of which, here’s an article from the folks over at Taking Route on how to maintain emotional and mental wellness overseas. You know what to do with this.


Rest is an important part of staying healthy, and naps can be an important form of rest. That’s Liz Kamper’s observation in this post. Share this with the global workers you know—after you take a nap.


Laura Bowling knows the importance of rest on the mission field—especially now that she is dealing with cancer. Her advice and suggestions should be helpful to your friends in cross-cultural ministry, even if they aren’t dealing with major health issues.


Here’s a brief audio clip that your partners on the mission field should find refreshing. Among all the goals that missionaries pursue, Christ is the ultimate. See if you agree with Frank Viola.


This post over at Thrive will have you in stitches even as you gain valuable insights into what life on the mission field is often like. No amount of training could have prepared this family for what they encountered. After reading this, you will be equipped to pray quite specifically for the missionaries you know.


Why is it important for missionaries to know how they’ve been wounded before they engage in ministry? That is the question Ryan Kuja tackles in this article.

It is the process of confronting our pain and knowing our stories that allows us to serve people from a stance of mutuality.

It’s also good for you to know, as a missionary advocate, what aspects of their past are likely to affect their future.



Karina Allen uses the classic 23rd psalm to make her point about resting in the shepherd’s care during times of transition. Who do you know that would benefit from this?




Coming up in September: Orient, hosted by Train International. “This two-week pre-departure training aims to equip people headed overseas with skills to help them navigate transition, stress, culture shock, and relationships who they can be more prepared and stay effective in whatever surroundings they find themselves.”


Know any women working near Uganda or Cyprus who could use a refreshing break? An Azmera retreat may be just the ticket. You can even volunteer to help. Or perhaps you would like to contribute toward a scholarship for someone who might not be able to attend otherwise. Get all the details here.


There are a couple annual gatherings of care providers that you may want to consider attending. They are great opportunities to build upon your skill set and develop a network of like-minded people for the enhancement of your ministry to missionaries. The CareGivers Forum is one event. It will be held October 21-24 at the Green Lake Conference Center in Wisconsin. The other event is PTM: Pastoral Training in MemberCare, to be held at the Ridgecrest Conference Center in Asheville, NC October 2-5. If you live in the area and cannot attend the whole event, you may want to consider coming to the pre-conference workshop to be led by Neal Pirolo. His topic will be “developing and building a church-based member care plan.”


Registration is now open for the Thrive retreat to be held in the Philippines October 29-November 1. Did you know that you could apply to be a volunteer to help facilitate Thrive retreats? You can find more information for attendee and volunteers here.



Stephen Smith gets a bit personal in this piece that relates as much to missionary advocates as it does to field workers.

The world does not need busy people. The world needs deep people.

Ask God to use this to challenge your own spirituality and to further enhance your ability to care well for those you love on the mission field.


Here’s a book that may well serve you as well as your favorite global worker. In Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, Alex Soojung-Kim Pang covers every type of rest and why you can actually accomplish more by resting more. Burnout is a major problem on the mission field. This book may help reduce the number of those who succumb.


If you’re involved in helping new missionaries prepare for the field, you might want to read Voices from the Field: Conversations with Our Global Family, by TJ MacLeslie. With questions like, If missionaries were going to come to your town, what would you want them to know before arriving? this book should be a great help in pointing new missionaries in the right direction.


Most of the missionaries heading for the field these days—or who will be heading there in the next decade—are millennials. Christina Baird wants to challenge the way we think about them (if we are not in that demographic ourselves). I think she has some very legitimate points. What do you think?


Want to get an advanced perspective on missionary care issues? Are you looking for a place to network with professional care providers? Mental Health and Missions may be for you. Hosted by Barnabas International and held in northeastern Indiana, registration is now open for this November 15-18 event.



Of course you know that the links we post here each week are but a tiny portion of the resources that we have available at Paracletos, including workshops, debriefing, and coaching. Let us know if we can serve you in any way.



New on my bookshelf:

  • Receiving Them Well, by Lisa Ennis & Lori Bryan
  • Gen Z: The culture, beliefs, and motivations shaping the next generation, by Barna
  • Insurgence, by Frank Viola
  • Desiring the Kingdom, by James K.A. Smith
  • Sojourner’s Workbook: A guide to thriving cross-culturally, by Connie Befus
  • Christianity at the Crossroads: How the second century shaped the future of the church, by Michael Kruger
  • Innovation in Mission: Insights into practical innovations creating kingdom impact, by Jim Reapsome and Jon Hirst

What I’m reading this week:

  • Extreme Teams, by Robert Shaw
  • Inspired: Slaying giants, walking on water, and loving the Bible again, by Rachel Evans
  • Understanding Gender Dysphoria, by Mark Yarhouse
  • Formed for the Glory of God, by Kyle Strobel
  • The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, George Long trans.
  • How to Read the Bible for All It’s Worth, by Gordon Fee
  • Emotionally Healthy Leaders, by Peter Scazzero
  • Winston S. Churchill: World in Torment: 1916-1922, by Martin Gilbert

Recently finished reading:

  • Receiving Sent Ones During Re-entry, by Zach Bradley
  • Stones of Remembrance, by Lois Evans and Jane Rubietta
  • Group Glue: The collective power of…group questions, by Jeffrey Cook
  • Finding Home, by Rachel Pieh Jones
  • New Seeds of Contemplation, by Thomas Merton
  • Home James, by Emile Steele Jackson
  • Missionaries are Real People, by Ellen Rosenberger
  • Imagination Redeemed: Glorifying God with a neglected part of your mind, by Gene Edward Veith and Matthew Ristuccia
  • Scripture and Cosmology, by Dr. Kyle Greenwood

Up next:

  • The Bible Tells Me So, by Peter Enns
  • Receiving Them Well, by Lisa Ennis & Lori Bryan