Grace

Good day everyone. We have been at ECHO in North Ft Myers, FL for 6 weeks now. It has been wonderful to be here. We have learned so much through seminars and hands on learning on the global farm. We have taught an intern seminar and will led a devotional next week. We also have had many conversations to encourage future missionaries and conversations that have encourage us during our time of waiting.

During our intern seminar, we shared about expectations, failures, successes, and conflict resolution. We shared many of our experiences on the mission field. Jeremy focused on healthy ways to solve conflict because the #1 reason missionaries come home early from the field is interpersonal conflicts with other missionaries. Unresolved conflict eventually causing relationships to  break down. Resolved conflict actually creates trust, strengthens relationships and commitment. The interns had fun roleplaying through some conflict situations.

We are taking turns being on the farm and caring for Anastasia. Each afternoon Anastasia takes a nap, so there is some quiet time to read.

I, Claudia, have been reading a book on parenting. It focuses on giving grace to our children and use opportunities to point our children to Christ who has given us so much grace. Throughout the book, it points out that we adults/parents struggle with the same things our children do like submitting to authority and seeking our own way. We need to confess to God and let our children see how we need God’s grace too. Over time they will turn to God but before that happens they will act in their sinful nature. So over and over and over we need to extend grace to our children.

This brought to my mind how on our first team how team members asked and asked and asked for grace to be extended to one team member who was eventually dismissed from the team by leadership above our team leader. There were many hurt feelings before and after the team member was removed. There was so much conflict on the team that never got resolved. And unfortunately it probably will never be resolved.

I, Claudia, personally have struggled with how to overcome things without resolution. I have forgiven my former teammates but there won’t be reconciliation of the relationships.

How do you move on?

GRACE

Each team member needed grace and also needed to extend grace. By God’s grace, I can extend grace to former teammates even now. There still won’t be reconciliation but through grace I experience peace, God’s peace that is beyond comprehension.

I am thankful for the quiet afternoons while Anastasia naps. The Holy Spirit is using the time to teach and heal my heart. I hope it also makes me a better parent and a better teammate.

We all encounter conflict in life. Conflict is  good if dealt with in a healthy way. Remember, grace needs to cover it, so that both forgiveness and reconciliation can happen.

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