WMU Blog

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?

Tags: 

Missions for Advent

I love Christmas, especially now that I’ve learned to pull back and focus more on the eternal gift of Christmas. Incorporating Advent practices into our family’s celebration was the turning point.

This year, I added an international missions emphasis. Our weekly Advent prayers included 2 of the missionaries featured in the Week of Prayer for International Missions prayer brochure.

Prayers flow into action. Invite your friends and neighbors to a WorldCrafts party. Consider hosting the Intriguing Indonesia party since Indonesia is the focus of this year’s International Mission Study. VisitWorldCrafts.org/parties.asp for everything you need to introduce your friends and neighbors to this country and this WMU ministry that develops sustainable, fair-trade businesses among impoverished people around the world.

Prayers, action, and joyful giving draw the season to a close. A bountiful Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions is the result. The heavens sing, and God multiplies it all for good.

Lucretia Mobbs loves this season of light.

Are You Tired Yet?

Thanksgiving is behind us. So is Christmas.

Only one more holiday to go, New Year’s Day!

Then, after we get past the first of the new year, we can settle down again. We’ll put away the decorations, return unwanted gifts, get to spend a few nights at home, and try to figure out a way to pay the bills for all the “specialness” that we enjoyed over the last month or so.

And, oh, let’s not forget that we will need to create a list of resolutions for the new year ahead. We will definitely want to lose weight, exercise more, spend less time on social media, and spend more quality time with God and our family.

Whew! I’m tired! How about you?

I’m tired just typing those words and thinking about the effort we’ll put forth in the weeks ahead.

Does the end of one year and the beginning of the next really have to be that way? Do we have to rush and hurry and overspend and over plan every minute of every day?

No!

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:

Missions Matters!

Sometimes it “pays” to look down. This is one way our family finds extra funds for the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.

When our children were young, we began the tradition of depositing any money found throughout the year into our Mission Jar. This included money discovered in the pockets of clothing to be washed, in vehicle seats, between couch cushions, and especially lying on sidewalks—I once stumbled across $7 this way! In December, we would take our money to a coin changer and include the total in our missions offering.

While our Mission Jar was a family project, it is always interesting to discover the creative ways churches publicize the international missions emphasis. My friend Sue’s church makes Lottie Moon come alive for young children by displaying a life-size cutout of Ms. Lottie and allowing the youngsters to compare their own size to this diminutive missionary to China.

Growing Missions in Your Church

While we know bigger isn’t always better, we all want our WMU to grow. Spiritually, of course, as well as physically. So what steps can you take to engage more preschoolers, children, students, and adults in missions education and involvement in your church?

Truly Humble

T. W. Hunt’s discipleship class changed my life. He told the class about a growing awareness that he spent more time reading about God than he did reading God’s Word. Hunt explained that this conviction led him to read only the Bible for the next 5 years. Amazing! Not 1 newspaper, magazine, or book, only the Bible. His face was lit from within as he taught, and I sensed the powerful presence of God in him. Oh, how I wanted to experience God like that.

Hunt taught us with humility and gentleness, and he made me realize that what you feed grows. I left that conference knowing that I had to narrow what I allowed into my life through media.

Philippians 4:8 became the test. Is it true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, or morally excellent? Is it worthy of praise? These questions became my guide.

It’s been 20 years since that conference. I’m still narrowing and learning from great spiritual teachers.

Lucretia Mobbs loves quiet time in the Psalms.

Dealing with Leadership Surprises

Being a leader is hard. But you never know just how hard until you’re the leader.

Here are the things that surprised me the most about leadership:

1. Delegating is hard. I admit it—I have a type A personality and maybe control issues and OK, maybe trust issues, but sometimes it just seems easier to do everything myself. Wrong attitude! I can’t do it all; I don’t have the skills, time, or patience to do everything with excellence. I am robbing someone else of a blessing and the opportunity to use his or her talents for the kingdom. How will anyone else learn to serve or lead if I do everything? Delegating is hard, but it is the right thing to do. Even Jesus delegated the feeding of the 5,000 to the disciples and His mission here on earth to us. 

Our Proactive Response Matters

The first week in December is a special time with the International Mission Study, prayer experiences during the Week of Prayer for International Missions, and giving to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering as highlights of the Christmas season for many of us.

This year, however, comes with a note of sadness. For the first time in many years, missionaries over the age of 50 with five years’ experience are being asked to consider voluntary retirement due to a financial shortage at the International Mission Board. This situation did not happen overnight. I’ve read many explanations and possible solutions such as a special offering or increased Cooperative Program giving so we can avoid bringing missionaries home. While both suggestions are good, it’s too late; retirement offers have been made and missionaries are making their decisions. The problem has existed for too long to find a quick solution. Ironically, the conclusion of the missionaries’ service will happen during December, the time we are all praying in earnest for them and the people they serve. It certainly adds a new dimension to our praying this year.

Heather's Holiday To-Do List

It’s so easy for me to overlook something during this time of the year . . . a gift for someone that slipped my mind, a special dessert, or even a tradition that means something to our family. I just get too busy!

This year is no different. I overlooked our family Christmas card.

I’ve sent a picture Christmas card to friends and family since the Christmas I was pregnant with our first son. It’s become a tradition for our little family. I kept putting it off this year because I didn’t have just the right picture for the card. And then, I looked at the calendar and realized that it was the week before Christmas, and I hadn’t ordered a card, much less mailed it.

Sigh.

So, I went to Facebook and posted this picture and explained it this way, “This is the first year in a very long time that I won’t be sending Christmas cards. Considering this is the best Christmas-type picture I have of the boys, maybe you’ll understand why I didn’t create a card to share with friends and family this year.”

Some friends laughed with me while others declared that I should have used the picture for our card. Maybe next year . . .

Pages

Back to Top