Sabbatical: from the Hebrew word Shabbat or Sabbath. It refers to a rest or break from work.
It traditionally last a year and should be observed every seven years. Because of the extreme weight and emotional toll which accompanies missions, many mission organizations require their missionaries to take a sabbath rest every 2-3 years.
It’s been 9 months since we came to the States and we feel like we are just now on the cusp of understanding sabbatical. That slowing down from ministry which has been referred to as an “exit ramp” has been much longer than expected. While we may not be physically in Mexico, ministry responsibilities have continued steadily throughout our time Stateside. As we seek God, we know that we are not fully experiencing the refreshment that should accompany a sabbatical. There are still deadlines and tasks which require our time and attention. Just this week, we worked on year end financial reporting, helped plan an outreach team that is headed to Hope House next week, reviewed building project details for the transition house, communicated regarding two speaking engagements, ironed out details for two additional outreach teams, wrote 2 blogs and sent an international wire transfer for Hope House.
So while we have rested from our responsibilities of being full-time “boots on the ground” missionaries, rest from administrative duties has yet to begin. The weight of responsibility still sits firmly on our shoulders and, to be fourth-coming, we are tired. Ministry Weight & Compassion Fatigue continue to befriend us and the physical exhaustion from the past seventeen years remains in our bones. We are just beginning to realize that it is time to really lay down some of our responsibilities and start the process of rest. So with God’s help, we seek to unpack our sabbatical and understand what true rest in Christ is all about.
Please continue to pray for our family as we navigate this season of life and ministry. We are so very grateful to all who have helped make this sabbatical possible. Our family cherishes your support and encouragement.