Donna, Abigail (our youngest), and I (Mark) are at our mission headquarters just outside of Denver, CO. We have gathered with other missionaries from literally every continent to go through “de-briefing” back at the home office. We are required to do this at least once every five years or so. And it has been an amazing time.
We are so thankful to be able to talk to people who have had similar experiences. We have felt a real sense of fellowship as we talk about moving to another country, losing your identity and most of the things you thought you did well, and just the feeling of going back to square one in a new culture, new language, and with new relationships.
Most of all, however, we have been so blessed to hear the stories of these missionaries living in incredible circumstances, because their desire to proclaim the Gospel is stronger than any desire for convenience or even safety.
We have heard stories about people working in the slums of Brazil, unstable situations in Africa, challenging situations in Japan and Argentina, and creative ministry to refugees in Spain. We are so thankful to be part of a larger team with such quality people. We are truly humbled by our colleagues and the way the Lord is using them. We feel like we have learned from them and have been so encouraged.
We know that God is also working in us and through us in Ukraine. We are getting a sense of renewal and refreshment to go back and get to work. We are excited that so many good things have happened in Ukraine, and we know that God is still at work and we look forward to picking up where we left off with renewed strength.
Please pray for us and all our fellow missionaries, that God would continue to renew our strength, that we would proclaim the Gospel boldly, and that we would be willing not only to share the Gospel but our very lives (1 Thessalonians 2:8). To God be the Glory!