Casual Friday Missionary Care Resources
What a week it’s been. The world is in dire need of what missionaries have to offer. Let’s make sure they are adequately cared for, with resources like these. And make sure to take care of your own spiritual health, too. So much sad news has a way of pulling us down.
Good missionary care begins before the missionary is even a missionary! Sound confusing? Well, the idea is that good counsel – good mentoring – is an essential part of the groundwork necessary for anyone to succeed in cross-cultural ministry. One question you may well need to address: Should your prospective missionaries wait a little longer before moving forward? That is a complex issue, by Amy Medina offers some helpful perspective on several aspects.
Speaking of qualifications for the mission field, Jordan Kauffman has compiled a useful list of topics that you might want to become familiar with. And check out the comments at the bottom of the post. The book that is linked, Cross-Cultural Servanthood, should be read by every person going to the field.
Think you know the essential qualities of a good missionary? Karl Dahlfred suggests you may want to add four more to your list if you want that missionary to remain on the field. What do you think – is he right?
“A single answer rarely unveils the true state of being,” says Rodney Duttweiler. If you really want to know how your missionary friend is doing, you need to get to the second question, which Duttweiler explains in this article. Some really good advice here for getting to the heart of your global worker’s condition.
Would it shock you to hear lyrics about God’s plan to bring glory to himself by enabling persons with disabilities to lead the powerful across the stage of redemption history? That’s the question David Deuel and Nathan John put to us in this post that introduces their new book: Disability in Mission: The Church’s Hidden Treasure. I am afraid that, all too often, we assume that “only the brightest and best” are qualified for missionary service. (Might that be a handy excuse for excluding ourselves?) Pick up a copy of this challenging book; I plan to. Let me know how it affects your thinking.
Ever wish you knew how to start a meaningful conversation with a missionary? Or how about wanting a list of good questions to ask? Well, Resonate Global Mission has a handy little sheet with 50 queries to prime your pump. It covers spiritual health, emotional health, family health, and team issues. (P.S. if you like this sort of tool, send me a comment below and I’ll send you a guide that Paracletos put together.)
LIFE ON THE FIELD
Ah, the honeymoon stage. Full of paradox. Harder and more joy-filled than imaginable. (But harder gets all the press.) Sarah Hilkemann has some encouragement for all her sisters on the field. Your faithful Father will be with you through it all. Pass this along to those you know who are just beginning their cross-cultural experience.
What does the Great Shepherd lead his people to? The answer Mike Gaston found may surprise you. You need to ponder this. The missionaries you love need to ponder this. This should be the foundation for all of our caring efforts.
What are the doldrums, and what do they have to do with TCKs? Dr. Rachel Cason knows, and you’ll know, too, if you read her post. You will gain an understanding that might be very useful to you in your interactions with third culture kids (adult or otherwise).
Here is a recently-publish book that you may want to add to your missionary care library. Third Culture Kids: A Gift to Care For, is full of interactive and reflective activities designed to help TCKs “integrate and embrace all their experiences into a life story that reflects who they are.”
YWAM has put together a helpful page of information and resources related to re-entry. You will want to be aware of these.
Know anyone who would be interested in a free guide to fundraising in the digital age? Network for Good is offering one.
Want to sharpen your interpersonal skills? Well, there’s a workshop by that very name, and the folks at Alongside will be hosting one October 27-November 1, in Richland, Michigan. More information is available through this link.
Who do you know working in Europe or South America? Who would you like to bless beyond belief with the gift of retreat? The folks at Thrive know how to provide spiritual, emotional, and physical care to field workers, and there are three upcoming retreats you should know about: one in Estonia, in October one in Croatia, in February of 2020; and one in Brazil, in April of 2020. You could pay someone’s way. Or—check this out: You could be a volunteer at one of these retreats and bless many people! Get the details here.
Sending and supporting the work of missions is complex and multifaceted. That’s why the folks at sixteen:fifteen will be hosting The Sending Triangle webinar on August 28. It’s free, and you can register here.
Many of us have come to appreciate the value of having a spiritual director in our lives. It’s a growing practice in missions and missionary care. Missio Nexus is hosting a webinar on the subject on August 22. I believe it would be well-worth the $25 fee (for non-members) to gain an understanding of this important topic. Maybe you can add spiritual direction to your list of missionary care skills?
If you’ve ever wanted to know more about missionary care in general; if you’ve ever wanted to network with those who have been doing the work for decades; if you’ve ever wanted to add to your own skill set in caring for sent ones—then PTM (Pastoral Training in Membercare) is for you. Coming up the first week of October, register soon and get an early bird discount. This year they will be celebrating 30 years of this valuable conference, giving you all the more reason to be there.
Marriage counseling is not just for couples who are experiencing problems. Any marriage can be enriched and revitalized through a good marriage retreat, like the one offered by Alongside. Coming up September 30-October 4. Who could you bless with the gift of this event?
Coming in September (and that’s soon!): Traction—a men’s retreat in Switzerland. “Traction is focused on helping men navigate their roles to regain spiritual footing and momentum to move forward.” Lots of opportunity for recreation and relaxation in a breath-taking environment.
Who could you send to this six-day retreat? ELIM Retreats is a ministry of Barnabas International and is devoted to caring for the hearts of global workers. September 15-20 in Eagle, Wisconsin.
Enjoy your weekend. Enjoy the Lord. Enjoy life. And enjoy using these resources to bless the global workers you know and love.
New on my bookshelf:
- Love Well: Living Life Unrehearsed and Unstuck, by Jamie George
- Innovation in Mission, by Jim Reapsome and Jon Hirst
What I’m reading this week:
- Getting Started: Making the most of your first year in cross-cultural service, by Amy Young (pre-publication)
- Serving Well, by Elizabeth & Jonathan Trotter
- Desiring the Kingdom, by James K.A. Smith
Recently finished reading:
- Formed for the Glory of God, by Kyle Strobel
- Summer, A Spiritual Biography of the Season, Gary Schmidt ed.
- The Return of the King, by JRR Tolkien
- The Gifts of Imperfection, by Brene Brown
- Beloved Dust, by Jamin Goggin and Kyle Strobel
- Searching for God Knows What, by Donald Miller