I have to say that I have some of the sweetest, most dearest friends EVER and they are ALL over the world!!!! I like to call them my daughters in the faith, and I am so PROUD of each and every one of them and love them and their families so very MUCH!
I had a lady come to me with this: I had something I wanted to get some advice on and hope you would help me. I’ve noticed that you seem close to a lot of the missionary wives that we know. So I was just wondering, how do you develop that type of bond with people? I think this is something that is missing in our churches, and I just want to see how I can do more to help and encourage the ladies in our church.
My response to her was, I have known them for a long time. Some of them were in our youth group. Some of them I met when we were in Peru. And some of them I met when Vision, a church in Alpharetta, GA that we were in a part of to help start up.
I think one thing is that I made myself available to them to come to me at any time to talk. You have to allow them into your life. You have to get to where you don’t pull away from them.
I even try to Skype them or call them on their vonage phones……which now is a little harder for me at times to call them since I work…however I do try and inbox them on Facebook and just talk with them. Ask them how they are doing, how the kids are doing….how the ministry is going. Sometimes they will vent to you about things or share some exciting news. Ask you to help them with things to surprise people . Ask them if there is anything that you can do for them or pray for them specifically.
Social media to me has its bad and its good. Good for me is that I am able to stay contact with my sweet friends and see how they are doing. See how their kids are growing, how their ministry is growing, and how to pray for them. If you do not do social media, you can email them or snail mail. Let me tell you one thing that the children LOVE as much as the parents…..getting things in the mail!! Send care packages to them Thanksgiving or before Christmas. Never know when something will get there so it is better to send it a little early! 🙂
This past year our church selected 7 missionary families for Christmas and sent them gifts. Things that they weren’t able to get where they are. Oh my!! LOVED the pictures that they sent with the children grinning ear to ear! This is a great way to get your church involved in getting to know your missionary! This is a picture of sweet Claire with her new gown that she received from our church. It is worth it all!
Another way to get to know them is to go on a missions trip and stay with them. They LOVE when people come and stay with them and take the time to get to know them and their families. And the children get attached to you…..heart wrencher when you have to leave and those sweet kiddos are crying as you are boarding! But so worth the time to get to know a sweet family that you support and know are doing a great work for the Lord.
Build a personal relationship with your missionaries. I will tell you like I tell the missionary ladies, I tell them don’t go in the church and sit down, get up and meet the people of the church and search out the pastor’s wife. Now I am going to tell you, don’t let those missionaries be the first to find you, get up and introduce yourself to them! If you have a conference and have a dinner or lunch, don’t sit with the ones you know, go sit with them and ask them questions and learn from them. They will turn out to be some of the greatest people you know!
I love all my sweet missionary young ladies. They are all my heroes! I think once you open up to them and let them in you will see how sweet and loving they are inside and out! I stay in awe at the mature spiritually of them all, and I learn so much from them!