Living on the field has unique spiritual, emotional, physical, and safety challenges that most of us as women have not experienced previously in our home cultures. Understanding and actively building in key aspects that help us thrive, rather than just survive, these challenges also decrease the likelihood of premature departure, depression, and other effects of stress.
One way to look at this is seeing it as a “road map” that helps us navigate around potholes, detours, and handle rough terrain. Today we’ll look at some of the key determinants of success in field ministry. We will cover them using four categories: spiritual health, emotional health, physical health, and safety considerations.
A key thing to keep in mind is that we only have to change 10% of the issues/stressors to make the difference between surviving and thriving. So as we consider these various areas, think of just 1 or 2 things that you might change. You’ll be amazed at the difference these small changes make in your overall joy, effectiveness, and energy level.
Seeing this active learning curve to thrive in this location as an incredible opportunity, rather than an overwhelming burden or challenge that you’re not sure you can succeed in, changes your focus, makes you more open to God’s work in your life, and renews your energy for the task.
Cultivate the practice now if you are not already doing so to actively review the day with God at the end of the day and find three things to be thankful for, including at least one item of personal growth or personal effectiveness He helped you experience today. (Not just items checked off your to-do list).
We spend a lot of time and resources getting training in the areas of culture, language, teambuilding, and assignment skills. Adding these other areas of focus will pay dividends throughout our ministry. We can look with expectation and anticipation that small steps of growth in each of these areas will help us to one day be the “mighty oaks” sheltering others, both colleagues and national friends and ministry partners.
Category: Newsletter Articles
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