Category: Uncategorized

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.

Conflict Resolution

Wednesday I, Jeremy, had a chance to share with the staff and interns here at ECHO about my experience with Conflict Resolution on the mission field. Sadly, interpersonal conflict is still the number one reason why missionaries leave the field early. Number two is children. I have found here in United States most people are untrained in conflict resolution and thus we avoid it all cost. I wanted to share a simple formula for you to use when talking to someone where conflict exists. This is a complex issue and this formula isn’t magical but just a suggestion.

  1.  Use “I feel” statements, then state why by saying “because”. Stay focused on the task that surrounds the conflict, not the person as much as possible.
  2. Actively Listen to their response.
  3. Repeat what you heard them say by saying “I heard you say”.
  4. Jump back to #1 and try to gain a clear understanding.

The main purpose of conflict resolution is not to determine who is right or wrong but to gain clear understanding to move forward together.

I hope this will help next time you encounter some conflict.

Jeremy

In case your inbox missed it, we just sent a new email update newsletter out yesterday.  Click here if you missed seeing it.

prayer

As we wait for God to reveal the next step, we have been praying this prayer.

Image result for abiding in christLord, You are teaching me so much about trusting You. Fully. Completely. Without suggestions or projections I’m choosing to embrace the very next thing You show me. I’ll take this first step. And then I’ll take the next. I finally understand I don’t have to fully understand each thing that happens for me to trust You. I don’t have to try and figure it out, control it, or even like it, for that matter. In the midst of uncertainties, I will just stand and say, “I trust You, Lord.” I visualize me taking my fear of rejection from my incapable clutches and placing my trust in Your full capability. And as I do, I make this all less about me and more about You. I replace my fragile efforts to control with Your fortified realities. You are the perfect match for my every need.
I am weak. You are strength.
I am unable. You are capability.
I am hesitant. You are assurance.
I am desperate. You are fulfillment.
I am confused. You are confidence.
I am tired. You are rejuvenation.
Though the long path is uncertain, You are so faithful to shed just enough light for me to see the very next step. I now understand this isn’t You being mysterious. This is a great demonstration of Your mercy. Too much revelation and I’d pridefully run ahead of You. Too little and I’d be paralyzed with fear. So, I’m seeking slivers of light in Your Truth just for today and filling the gaps of my unknown with trust. Amen.

from the end of chapter 5 of Univited by Lysa Terkeurst

439

The count is up to 439 HEARTS as of this morning. We are still expecting that number to rise as more come in.

THANK YOU ALL for SHOWING YOUR LOVE

We have been overwhelmed by the number for hearts that have come. It has been exciting to wait for the mail to come each day. It really has been encouraging to see our support team in a tangible way. We have laminated them and are currently cutting them out. It is so encouraging to read each one of them. We are excited to have ALL the HEARTS to put up in our home in Namibia to daily remind us of so many praying for us each day. THANK YOU!!!

We are currently still waiting to hear about our visas. Yesterday, we did hear the visas are in their finally stage and hopefully we will know by the end of the month. Thank you for being patient. God’s timing is not our timing.

Please continue to pray for our visa approval and for our hearts to be calmed as we wait.

Just a handful of the hearts received.

Fun Fact Friday: Size and Language

Around 2.5 million people live in Namibia which is the size of the Southeast United States. For perspective, Metro Atlanta, GA has a population of around 5.6 million. There are about 30 languages spoken among the tribes of people. The main tribes in Namibia are Ovambo 50%, Kavango 9%, White Namibian 7%, Herero 7%, Damara 7%, Nama 5%, Caprivian 4%, Bushmen 3%, Tswana 1%, and others less than 1% each which include the Himba people (another unreached people group in Namibia).