Casual Mental Health Friday

May 10, 2019 | Blog, Casual Friday

This should go without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway. Missionaries are just as prone (perhaps more so, due to the nature of their living situation) to mental illness as anyone else you love. Since May is mental health awareness month, you should take a little time to add to your understanding of the issues that might affect those global workers you love. You can start here.



Know a missionary who is looking for counseling? Dr. Beverly Richardson offers Skype counseling or in-person sessions from her retreat center on Cyprus. She also offers debriefing and coaching.


Here’s an opportunity for “any church pastor or missions leader wishing to experience a new missions way and willing to train others.” Join a cohort facilitated by AMPD to discover better ways to partner with missionaries.


When you make plans to visit your missionary friends on the field, be sure to read this article on how to protect yourself.


Listening well is an acquired skill. This simple note from Dorette will add to your skill set, especially the questions that she tacks on at the end.



Guess what! There’s a new Facebook group for singles doing M-work around the globe! “Table for One with an Extra Chair” is an honest and supportive place for singles who are involved in that-type-of-profession-that-shall-not-be-named because, you know, expulsion–or jail.  🙂 It’s a forum for meaningful community, thoughtful conversation and helpful resources. If you’re single and want a place to hang out with like-wedded peeps, come sit at the table–there’s an extra chair just for you. (And spread the word–the more the merrier.) 


What limitations, if any, should be placed on the use of social media when you’re on the field? That’s not an easy question to answer. Laura Bowling has some challenging thoughts on the subject that your friends overseas may find helpful.


On the same subject as Laura’s post, Carly Isleib weighs in. Social media can be a blessing and a curse, a resource and an idol.


What do you do when you find yourself running on empty? That is a scenario that is painfully common among global workers. C. Anderson offers three ways to establish a spiritual root system. Share this with those missionaries you love.


Veteran good-bye sayer Marilyn Gardner will give you plenty to pray about the next time your missionary friend must say it. Good-byes on one end of the journey mean hellos on the other end, and both can be precious.



What role do you play as a partner with global workers? While Andy Johnson wrote this piece for those on the receiving end of your gifts (and you might want to forward this to them), it is equally instructive for you as a financial supporter.



How could becoming your own best friend be helpful for an MK? Dr. Rachel Cason explains. You might want to share this with the MKs you know (after you read it yourself, of course).



The Art of Transition is a weeklong retreat coming up in August (the registration deadline is 15 May) which will be hosted in Turkey. Can’t make it to the actual event? Check out the virtual cohort (register before June 1).


Resilience is the buzz word these days in missionary care. How can missionaries develop sustainable lifestyles and ministry habits? The folks at CIT (Center for Intercultural Training) are offering a 2 week online course that your missionary friends can take later this summer (August 28-September 11).


It’s not too early to begin making plans to attend PTM – the one event we personally are determined to make every year. Join a few hundred member care people ranging from multi-year veterans to newbies. One of the best and most practical events of its kind.


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. Two events to choose from: May 20-24, and September 30-October 4. Who could you bless with the gift of this event?


Are you working with someone in the early stages of determining their calling? The Journey Deepens offers a weekend retreat designed to help people discern their next step. You might want to consider attending along with the person you are mentoring. Coming up in September, in Indianapolis.


Interaction International will be hosting a transition seminar for MKs/TCKs who will be re-entering the U.S. this summer. July 20-26 in Colorado Springs. You should consider sponsoring someone for this event. Research has shown that re-entry events are the most helpful resource available to young people transitioning back into their passport culture.


May God continue to increase your awareness of missionaries’ needs, and of the special way in which you can meet them. Thanks for caring enough to check out these resources.


New on my bookshelf:

  • Love Well: Living Life Unrehearsed and Unstuck, by Jamie George
  • Innovation in Mission, by Jim Reapsome and Jon Hirst
  • The Life of God in the Soul of Man, by Henry Scougal
  • Serving Well, by Elizabeth & Jonathan Trotter


What I’m reading this week:

  • Invitation to Retreat, by Ruth Haley Barton
  • Desiring the Kingdom, by James K.A. Smith
  • Formed for the Glory of God, by Kyle Strobel
  • Emotionally Healthy Spirituality (updated), by Peter Scazzero
  • The Return of the King, by JRR Tolkien


Recently finished reading:

  • The Two Towers, by JRR Tolkien
  • Dying Well, by John Wyatt
  • This Is Marketing, by Seth Godin


Up next:

  • The Gifts of Imperfection, by Brene Brown