Casual New Year Friday

Jan 10, 2020 | Blog, Casual Friday

Welcome to 2020! Let’s make it the best year ever in terms of missionary care. With resources like these, you can play a vital role in keeping global workers healthy and growing. Be sure and spread these around.



Even if you don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions, this should be one—for you and for those missionaries you care about. But adopting it may require some rethinking.

Sabbath is like holding a newborn for the first time for many of us…

Sabbath is not some onerous command to obey; it is a prescription for a healthy soul. Joshua Gorenflo explains in this article.


What’s the difference between praying with expectations and praying with expectation? Spiritual director Donna Maukenon wants you to know. It could make a huge difference in the way 2020 plays out for your missionary friends.


After 20 years of ministry, Sean Li finally took a break. Not simply a vacation or a holiday, but an extended time of self-care.

I gave myself permission to invest in my own soul.

You probably know some men who would identify with Sean’s story; they would also benefit from his discovery. Share this with them—and take note of the opportunity mentioned toward the bottom of the article.


Not all breaks need to be a week long. In this one minute video, Daniel Pink describes the type of break that will surely enhance the focus of any missionary you know who does desk work (i.e. language learning, lesson preparation, culture filing, etc.). Go ahead and watch it for yourself; it can’t hurt.



Do you know anyone who has recently left the mission field—indefinitely? They may wonder what Laura wondered when she returned to her sending country: Is my knowledge still valuable? What is it like to be an “ex-missionary”? (Is there really such a thing?) How does one readjust to the sending side of the equation? This post offers plenty of ideas.



Looking for a place to send someone for debriefing? Paracletos will be hosting 5-day debriefing events every month except December. Email me  ( for dates and details.


Want to be trained in debriefing? Paracletos is offering 4 opportunities this year (March, June, August, and November). Openings for 6 individuals for each of these 5-day trainings. Email me ( for details.


Who do you know that could use some R&R? Paracletos offers top-notch hosting at Baan Sabai Lodge. Check the lodge website for available dates.


“Are you looking for a time to quiet yourself before the Lord and receive His rest? This is for you.” Safe Place is extending this invitation to attend Ancient Paths Retreat. If you know a missionary close to the Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania, you might want to give them the gift of retreat in February.


It’s not too early to start thinking about re-entry programs for MKs—like Reboot. They have limited space for their program next summer, so early registration is encouraged. Who could you sponsor?


Debriefing is one of the best things a missionary can do for themselves while going through a transition. The folks at Barnabas, International will be hosting two opportunities in 2020: Interlude will be held in June, and July. Check here for more information. You may want to begin planning now to send your favorite missionary to one of these—your gift to them.


You might want to look into this soon for the m’s you know working in southeast Asia. Field Life will be hosting a Momentum Men’s Conference on Borneo if March of 2020. (This is the opportunity mentioned in the post by Sean Li above.) Looks like a great opportunity for you to bless someone with a soul-refreshing getaway.


A special getaway for a limited number of U.S. and Canadian women who live and work cross-culturally: Thrive retreat in Beaver Creek, Colorado. Now open for registration. Who could you send?


This looks like a phenomenal opportunity to gain an overall education in missionary care. Frontiers will be conducting a five-day conference next April called CareCon, “designed for pastors, church staff, family members, ministry partners, and anyone who wants to support global workers.” I am planning to go. Will I see you there?


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, motional, and physical care to field workers, and there are two upcoming retreats you should know about: one  in Croatia, in February; and one in Brazil, in April. 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.


In the next few weeks we hope to introduce a new format for these carefully-curated resources compiled for caring people like you. We always appreciate any feedback you care to offer. Have you found these resources to be useful? Let us know how in the comments section below.  


New on my bookshelf:

  • Inexpressible: Hesed and the Mystery of God’s Lovingkindness, by Michael Care
  • Tending Soul, Mind, and Body: The Art and Science of Spiritual Formation, Hiestand & Wilson, ed.
  • The Mind of a Missionary: What Global Kingdom Workers Tell Us About Thriving on Mission Today, by David Joannes
  • The God Who Gives: How the Trinity Shapes the Christian Story, by Kelly Kapic
  • Homeward Bound: A spouse’s guide to repatriation, by Robin Pascoe


What I’m reading this week:

  • Mansions of the Heart: Exploring the seven stages of spiritual growth, by R. Thomas Ashbrook
  • Serving Well, by Elizabeth & Jonathan Trotter
  • Desiring the Kingdom, by James K.A. Smith


Recently finished reading:

  • Autumn: A spiritual biography of the season, Gay Schmidt, ed.
  • Souvenirs and Solitude, by Brennan Manning
  • Formed for the Glory of God, by Kyle Strobel


Up next:

  • Searching for God Knows What, by Donald Miller