Casual Post-Flood Friday
Last night we were able to leave our property for the first time in five days. The Ohio River, and all the rivers and creeks feeding into it, was flooding in our region. For us that meant four feet of water where our driveway meets the paved road. We had plenty of warning, so we were prepared. Which, of course, makes me think of missionary care.
It doesn’t take much for a flood of issues to pile up (relationship problems, security issues, low finances, lack of results, spiritual dryness…). The potential for devastating effects is never far away. That’s why warnings and preparation are vital. It’s why we relentlessly remind you of the strategic role you play in keeping missionaries on the field, by using resources like these.
Know anyone planning to minister as a cross-cultural business person? NexusB4T will mentor them through an experienced professional. They can also coach them once they have started their business.
Learning a new language and culture will be easier for new missionaries if they have some training in the process. CTI offers such a course, and the next class begins April 15. Also, CTI offers a four-week course called Equipping for Cross-cultural Life and Ministry. It is a comprehensive preparation for transitioning to and thriving in a new environment.
Fundraising Coach Deb Evans, over at Tailored Fundraising Solutions, reminds us that follow up is vitally important to the process of raising support. While you’re at the site, check out the other articles and resources they offer.
LIFE ON THE FIELD
Being connected all the time has its downside. Jerry Jones explains how news from “home” can be an overwhelming challenge at times. How might you pass on news in a way that helps your friend on the field?
Want to know the truth? (Can you handle it?) Want to know what life on the field is really like, more often than most missionaries would like to admit? Taylor May will tell you. Not everyone experiences what she writes about, but most global workers will. How would you walk alongside someone in her situation?
Marian Vischer didn’t write this for missionaries in particular, but the crazy life she describes could certainly be a description of life on the mission field. And the way she talks about self care? That’s something every missionary can learn from.
The folks at Pioneers-USA asked veteran missionaries what they would tell those just starting out in cross-cultural ministry. The results were compiled in these five best practices for your first year on the field. Practical wisdom, right here.
Home Ministry Assignment (HMA) – a time that elicits a paradox of feelings. Dread mixed with excitement. Refreshment mixed with exhaustion. The chance to see friends, and too many people to see. Michele Phoenix talks about another aspect of HMA that is rarely addressed: its effect on MKs. You really need to read this, and take note of the very practical advice Michele offers all who desire to play a positive role in the lives of missionaries and their children.
Transition is often full of uncertainties, as Jenilee Goodwin well knows. If you know a missionary dealing with such things, they will appreciate Jenilee’s encouragement.
We have often linked to the excellent resources produced by Ellen Livingood at Catalyst Services. If you are reasonably close to Philadelphia, you might consider attending their Interchange 2018 conference. Scheduled for May 16-17, this is an opportunity for “church missions leaders and mission agency personnel to learn from one another.”
The incomparable Breathe retreat will be held June 20-30 this year in Interlaken, Switzerland. Ten days of holistic refreshment. It’s time to register. (Who would you like to sponsor?)
ReBoot is a re-entry program for MKs 17-35. Two opportunities to choose, and a special wilderness experience option. Spread the word to any Canadian missionary families you know.
LeRuche debriefing events will be held in North Georgia three times this year: once in May and twice in August. Check their web site for dates and more information.
The Radiant Life Retreat is a debriefing event for those who have live cross culturally for a year or more. The next program will be held in Orlando, FL April 27 – May 5. Excelling Leaders, the hosting group, also offers individualized debriefings on request. Check their web site for more information.
Here are some more debriefing opportunities from CIT (Center for Intercultural Training) in North Carolina: July 15-20 and December 2-7.
Yet another possibility for debriefing is Emmaus Encounter, held in the beautiful Flathead Valley near Kalispell, Montana. Take a look at what they offer in their five day package.
One of the best ways to prevent unnecessary attrition is to ensure that your sent ones are adequately prepared before going overseas. Mission Smart, by David Frazier, is an excellent resource to help you do just that.
Harbor of Refuge is a new resource for those looking for a place to rest, be refreshed, or be debriefed. Located in Waterloo, Iowa, the veteran missionary care providers offer their home for free (though donations are accepted). Here is a brochure describing the ministry. Keep an eye out for a web site soon.
We talk a lot about the importance of debriefing in these posts. A lot. That’s because debriefing by trained care providers is one of the most cost-effective methods of helping your sent ones stay healthy. Craig Thompson explains why.
In this podcast, a professional certified coach explains how life coaching can help mission workers thrive. Sherri Dodd, veteran missionary and founder of Advance Global Coaching, shares her passion for helping cross-cultural workers achieve their goals and be effective in ministry. Coaching would be an incredible gift that you could offer to your favorite missionary.
A wise man once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” By equipping yourself with resources like these, and by sharing them, you are preventing tons of unnecessary attrition.
What I’m reading this week:
- The Emotionally Healthy Woman, by Gerri Scazzero (reading with my wife)
- Winston S. Churchill: World in Torment: 1916-1922, by Martin Gilbert
- Winter: A Spiritual Biography of the Season, Gary Schmidt, ed.
- Your Best Year Ever, by Michael Hyatt
Just finished reading:
- Terrific! Five Star Customer Service, by Stan Toler & Keith Hawk
- Living Far Away, by Esther Abbott
- Moving Far Away, by Esther Abbott
- Ali and Nino, by Kurban Said
- Messianic Christology, by Arnold Fruchtenbaum
- Consider Your Calling, by Gordon Smith
- Emotionally Healthy Leaders, by Peter Scazzero