Mission Friends

Wrap-Around Care

Wrap-around care. I was struck by this phrase that was new to me. I learned of the phrase in the article, “Contagious Love for One More Child,” 1 in Sharing, the newsletter for Florida Baptist Children’s Homes. The article focused on a church whose members have become invested in caring for vulnerable children by becoming foster families, adoptive families, or wrap-around families. The article speaks of wrap-around care as offering resources or support to adoptive and foster parents. Wrap-around care is a way of showing these families they are not alone by giving them encouragement and assistance in various ways.

As a Mission Friends teacher, you may have families in your church who are foster parents or adoptive families. Though not all children in foster or adoptive care have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), all of these children have gone through some type of trauma. I like the idea of giving wrap-around care to these foster and adoptive families so they can concentrate on providing for the emotional and physical needs of the child.

What are some ways of providing wrap-around care to these families?

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Learning, Praying, Giving, Going

Do you know all the different ways that the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering helps missionaries? Below are just a few of the ways that the Christmas offering has helped Jacob and Robin Talley as they serve in Indonesia:

Learning from a Preschooler

Preschoolers always teach me a lot, but this was particularly true last week as a preschooler taught me about Indonesia. Each year during the first week of December, national WMU has a program and open house to observe the Week of Prayer for International Missions. People from many surrounding churches come to sing Christmas carols together, meet retired and stateside missionaries, pray for missions, and sip a cup of hot apple cider. Sometimes we might Skype a missionary or show a video of a missionary, but this year we were blessed to have special workers who serve in Indonesia as speakers at our Week of Prayer program. They are on stateside assignment and will return to Indonesia soon.

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Mission Friends and the Holidays

So, what does your December schedule look like? If you are like most Mission Friends leaders, you are probably looking at a church calendar with at least two fewer Mission Friends sessions than usual. There are many ways to get creative in completing your Mission Friends unit and the International Mission Study in the month of December.

Reaping a Harvest

Aylett Family

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Gal. 6:9 NIV1)

This is a favorite verse for Jeremy Aylett. Mr. Aylett shares, “Any time you step out in faith and obedience to Jesus, there is always adversity and difficulty. What’s important is that we remember growth takes time and we shouldn’t grow weary in doing good. As long as we do what is God-honoring and good, there will be a harvest. We must pursue wisdom, skill, and feedback from others, but we trust God to bring the growth in His time!”

Indeed, the Ayletts stay very busy and have much work to complete. San Diego is an incredibly beautiful and temperate city. People who live there enjoy a vast array of recreational opportunities. With almost 70 miles of beaches, theme parks, and attractions like the San Diego Zoo and SeaWorld, this city offers virtually unending sources of play and creativity. Jeremy Aylett explains that while these activities are enjoyable, they are also distractions to spiritual thought and conversations.

Are They Real?

As I showed the picture of the Aylett family to my Mission Friends, Conner looked at the picture and asked, “Are they real?” I assured him that yes, the missionaries are real. We then talked about the Ayletts living in San Diego, and that there are people there who have never heard about Jesus.

Later I was still thinking about his question, “Are they real?” It seemed odd to me at the time because the picture is a photo, so it is obvious to me that these are real people. But at Conner’s four years, he still has difficulty discerning what is real and what is not real. In today’s world of photo editing programs, even photos can be manipulated so that what is not real appears to be real. As we think about preschoolers and their development, we know that preschoolers have difficulty discerning fantasy from reality. They have difficulty telling the difference between what is real and imaginary.

Welcoming Preschoolers to Mission Friends

Do you have new preschoolers in your Mission Friends® class as the new church year starts? You may also have preschoolers who have been away for the summer, so they feel like they are starting again. Some preschoolers may be promoting into your Mission Friends class. Use these tips for giving preschoolers a welcome to Mission Friends.

Picture Set Ideas and Activities

What can I do with the Mission Friends Leader Picture Set after we have completed a unit of study? Check out these fun ways to extend the usefulness of this resource and to help your Mission Friends® revisit the missionaries they have already met:

Two Dozen Painting Ideas

Why paint with just plain paintbrushes all the time? There are a myriad of items that preschoolers can use in painting. Preschoolers love to paint, and they can gain so much from painting: eye-hand coordination, large muscle control, small muscle control, color identification, color mixing, left-right and up-down concepts, creativity, a sense of accomplishment, and responding to God in wonder. Listed here are 2 dozen items for preschoolers to use in painting.

Who Helps You Serve?

When asked who serves with him and helps in his work, Pastor Fue Chee Her gave four names and shared the ways that each individual supports his ministry. He first listed his father, Cher Pao Her, a retired Southern Baptist pastor. Pastor Her explained that his father’s experience and leadership abilities are crucial to his ministry.

Next he listed Deacon Ber Yang who assists in developing a vision for all areas of ministry at Gospel Hmong Baptist Church.

Third, Pastor Her said that his mentor Steve Dyess supports him with wisdom, encouragement and prayer.

Finally, he told about the support of Pastor Jackie Hill and Roseville Baptist Church. Roseville Baptist has given Gospel Hmong Baptist Church a place to meet and worship, as well as sharing their equipment. Roseville Baptist also provides prayer support and encouragement.

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