Furlough is coming…

Fuji from the air copy

By the time you are reading this, I will be stateside for our furlough.  I’ve heard so many who say they don’t understand what a furlough is or why the missionary needs one.  So today’s post is more for those who are reading who are not missionaries.  It will be two-fold:  to give an explanation of what furlough is and to give insight into how to pray for the furloughing missionary. 

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Abundant Life or a Slow Death

Cherry Blossoms copy

“All I want in life is such circumstances
as may best enable me to serve thee in the world;
To this end I leave all my concerns in thy hand,
but let me not be discouraged,
for this hinders my spiritual fervency;
Enable me to undertake some task for thee,
for this refreshes and animates my soul,
so that I could endure all hardships and labours,
and willingly suffer for thy name.
But, O what a death it is to strive and labour,
to be always in a hurry and yet do nothing!”
~Valley of Vision, pg. 176

What do you do when you are in those spiritually dry times?  What do you do when you feel like you are really struggling to keep your head above water both spiritually and physically?  I have a few plan of attacks that I use during those times.  I have to confess that recently I have been struggling in my prayer life.  Not that I am not praying.  I just wonder if it is doing any good or if God is actually listened.  I know I am not the only one.  

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Come Apart and Rest Awhile

My husband and I serve in Japan.  Christmas is not a national holiday here, but it is our biggest ministry time of the year.  Many people do not know what Christmas is, but they know it has something to do with the church.  From the time we celebrate American Thanksgiving with family and friends until New Year’s Day, life is a whirlwind.  I heard a missionary say once that from Thanksgiving to Christmas she felt like a train picking up speed and that on New Year’s Day, she was going to crash.  HA!  I think of that every year as I feel like I am on a run away train…

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