Leaving the mission field is daunting. There are all kinds of doubts. There is a kind of rebellion, that is, resisting God’s new direction for your life, spawned by the fear of man. There are questions like “Why have I lost my burden, vision, and zeal for the people God called me to?” “Why do I feel burned out?” “What could I have done differently?” At one time or another we asked ourselves the same questions. Through the last 20 years we have seen many missionaries become discouraged and leave the mission field. Some just needed time to rest and heal, and then they returned. Others just wanted to go “home”. Still others just dropped out of ministry altogether. I am thankful that God allowed another missionary to go through the whole gauntlet of these feelings and issues; who learned something about themselves so that they could recognize when fellow missionaries were experiencing the same issues. I am thankful for Don Mingo taking time to correspond and talk with me during the transition we were about to go through. We were burned out and tired. We were seeking spiritual guidance but not finding answers. This was no one’s fault; it just takes someone who has been down that same road. I am excited about Don Mingo’s ministry because sometimes missionaries don’t need to resign, go home, or drop out. They just need someone who has been there and recovered; someone who recognizes the symptoms and can offer sound, biblical advice. Not only will missionaries and their ministries be restored, but more importantly, people whom God loves and cares for will be restored for future ministry.
MANNA Worldwide Missionary
We met Don and Kathy in Ohio as we prepared for departing to the field of Guatemala with MANNA Worldwide. As a retired member from the Airforce I had spent time in a few countries and I could relate to what their ministry can do for missionaries. As a member of the military stationed overseas for years, or in temporary status, there was always a light at the end of the tunnel.
The stress of continual living in overseas communities with no supporting team was not known. And, I knew I was returning home after a designated period of time. The other issue military members struggle with is the consistent conflict the Fog of War. Mistakes can under such stress costing many lives.
I’ve seen missionaries living in countries, regardless of modern amenities, and there is little support for them to take a break from day to day ministry. This can lead to burn out. For even the best of them conflict can and does arise between spouses and other missionaries.
I am encouraged with how Don is approaching his new calling. I feel God prepared him during their many years living and serving in South Africa. He demonstrated to me how he takes his “Thorn” and uses it to further the Kingdom of God by helping other missionaries. From firsthand experience he seeks to serve other missionaries. His calling is to refresh, encourage, and assist missionaries through the same struggles they experienced.
Knowing there will be someone readily available to minister to myself, fellow missionaries, and our families when the time comes, is comforting. To know someone has your back when things get clouded in Fog of spiritual warfare is encouraging.
Thanks Don & Kathy for not being a Jonah.
MANNA Worldwide Missionaries