Wow, we have survived a month in New York City! Tonight we write this update from Washington DC where we are staying with dear friends for what they call a “detox” weekend.
Family, Conflict-Resolution & Spiritual Nourishment
What do all these things have in common? These were some of the topics we looked at this week in our training. There was a two fold emphasis for the week. The first was looking at how to maintain a healthy emotional and spiritual life on the field. This looked at our lives as individuals, within a family, and as a team member. The second emphasis was on conflict and learning about our own style of handling conflict. This was particularly helpful as we both struggle with handling conflict positively and thinking of conflict as something that can be positive within a team. Once we identified how we dealt with conflict the entire group learned strategies to resolving conflict. This week was particularly meaningful and applicable to our current lives and definitely an important aspect of life on the mission field.
No More Homework!
Yes, we had homework this month. One project was to create a learning contract. The learning contract is in essence a sheet of goals. The difference in this approach was to specifically organize the goals by categories, write why the action was needed, have a time frame to complete them and to have ways to measure each goal. This process was very positive in having us look at areas where we are doing really well and look at areas we could challenge ourselves to improve. The most important area we both wanted to emphasize was our prayer lives, individually and corporately.
The second major assignment was a final presentation to give before the group about our time in NY City. We chose to take from “All I Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten” and spin it as “All I Needed to Know [about CCMI] I Learned from Tobin.” You can look at the PowerPoint we used to aid our presentation. As you might guess there are many inside jokes and the slide show doesn’t have the personal comments we made to the group.
Behind the Scenes
Each week there is an in house e-newsletter published. Check out the final newsletter sent to all the participants for a more in depth recap of the week.
The Good, The Bad and Looking Ahead
The great news is we have completed all our training with MTW and in essence are ready to buy our plane tickets for Japan…at least once we raise the rest of our support. The bad news is our saga with our house has seemed to end negatively. Yesterday we thought everything was a go, but today we learned our contract fell through. As you can imagine we are feeling many emotions, but ultimately trusting in God’s sovereignty to direct us. This is an urgent prayer request that we would have wisdom on what to do next.
Currently, we are emotionally and physically exhausted from this past month. This first week back we are going to try to spend a few days resting in Southern Virginia. We will then continue to support raise until the remaining 25% is pledged. Please let us know if you have any contacts or suggestions as we round out support raising!
Many Thanks and Praise
We first want to thank you for supporting us so faithfully in prayer, finances, word of encouragement and love. We are so blessed by your partnership in our ministry and know God is using you to spread the Gospel of Christ to the Japanese.
Second we praise our God for a wonderful month preparing for overseas mission service. We were protected, we were challenged, our eyes were open to blind areas within our lives, we were loved and encouraged, we were provided for and ultimately when you sum the month up we were richly blessed. This training is invaluable to us and will only become more meaningful once on the field. Praise God for answering so many prayers in such BIG ways!
*CCMI – Cross Cultural Ministry Internship