Casual Friday Resources

May 25, 2018 | Blog, Casual Friday

It’s that time of year again. This week’s edition could easily be dedicated to transition. Whenever you hear of someone graduating in this country, keep in mind that MKs who have just graduated are likely to be returning to their passport country soon. Equip yourself for interacting well with them. And there’s plenty of other good stuff in here as well. Enjoy.



It’s nearly impossible to overemphasize the importance of rest on the mission field. It is incredibly easy for the work of the Lord to overshadow the Lord of the work in the hearts of those who are sent to represent his heart to others. Pastor Adam Mabry understands that. His admonition would be a great reminder for those with whom you partner in missions work.


I talk a lot about self-care on this blog, as do many others. Yet still it is widely misunderstood, downplayed, or viewed with suspicion. In this post Bethany Brummitt chimes in on the subject. You—and the global workers you know—should read it.


Science has confirmed that naps can help with complex learning tasks (like learning a new language). Erin Wildermuth has the details, along with several other good reasons for napping.




Leadership consultant Heather Kenny blogs about issues that often relate to missionaries, too. This post about dealing with the unexpected is a good example. This is one to pass around, for sure.




Yeah ducks and yuck ducks. A bit corny, perhaps, but oh so memorable. Sarah Hilkemann is thankful that she remembered what she was taught at MTI before leaving for the field. Now that she’s returning, this advice has been very helpful.


It’s important to say your goodbyes. That’s Marilyn Gardner’s advice for all who will be transitioning soon, and good advice it is. Pass this one around quickly, before everyone has already left for home assignment.


Sometimes transition doesn’t involve moving. Bayta Schwarz explains what it feels like to remain stationary while transition takes place around her. Who do you know who might be in a similar situation?


Jerry Jones writes about transition from the other direction: from comfortable insider in one’s passport country to befuddled foreigner in a host country. 25 things every newbie should know before they depart for the mission field.


Returning to one’s passport country often triggers something called reverse culture shock. You need to understand it, and M.T. can help

I’m going home after all… how hard could going home possibly be?

She not only describes well what it feels like to return, she offers practical advice on how to cope with those feelings. You’ll want to read this for your own understanding, and you’ll want to share it with your friends coming back from the field.




Marilyn Gardner has put together an excellent list of gift ideas for that TCK you know who just graduated. Know any of those?


Adult TCK Rachel Hicks eloquently describes the chameleon syndrome—that tendency that TCKs have to want and try to blend into whatever culture them find themselves in. This is something you want to know and understand; it will equip you to interact well with the TCKs who cross your patch.




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.”


There are a couple of 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.


“Will you or any global women you know be Stateside this summer? Would a few days of worship, prayer, Biblical teaching, pampering, rest, and fellowship with other women in an idyllic mountain setting be a blessing to your life?” Then you should know about the 2018 Colorado Retreat to be hosted by Thrive July 10-13. Space is limited, so register soon.


The folks at Interaction International are offering a transition seminar for TCKs returning to the U.S. It will be held in Colorado Springs, CO from July 21 through July 27.


Barnabas International will be hosting Interlude, a debriefing retreat, July 24-27 in Indianapolis, IN. A chance to share your story and reflect on God’s work in your life. More information and registration are here.


Sometimes the best encouragement is simply found in being together. Thrive retreats provide counseling, massage therapy, small group interaction, worship and prayer time, beauty care, and speaker sessions for women in cross-cultural ministry—all for $125! There is one coming up in Colorado in July, and one in the Philippines in October. Who would you like to send?


Elim retreats, a ministry of Barnabas, International, are held twice a year. “It is our heart to provide spiritual care to each missionary or global worker that participates in order to promote a time of rest, renewal, and restoration.” The next one is scheduled for June 10-15 in Wisconsin.




When you go visit your missionary partners in their place of service, you should seriously consider taking your kids as well. You will be helping prepare the next generation of care providers. AK Turner offers 10 tips for traveling with kids.


Josie Oldenburg has put together a remarkable list of gift ideas that you can use to bless your global worker friends. How many of these would you have thought of without her prompting?




After many years of living in China, Emily Jackson thinks her replies to Jeopardy statements would be quite different than before she went. Her questions will give you a good chuckle.


Lauren Wells gives us five common quirks of TCKs. How does this list match up with the TCKs you know?



I know it’s a holiday weekend in the U.S., so I’ll not overload you this week. Of course, you can always return later when you have time to look through all of the great resources.


What I’m reading this week:

  • The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, George Long trans.
  • Scripture and Cosmology, by Dr. Kyle Greenwood
  • 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

Just finished reading:

  • When God Gives Dreams, by Kelly Langston
  • Out of Context: How to avoid misinterpreting the Bible, by Richard Schultz
  • Democratizing Innovation, by Eric Von Hippel
  • Building a Culture of Innovation, by Cris Beswick et al

Up next:

  • The Bible Tells Me So, by Peter Enns