Thursday, March 28, 2013

Easter, an "awkward" holiday...

When I was single, I wanted to write blog posts like this one so bad...

but I feared coming across in an unhelpful way.

Now that I've got a ring on my finger and have said my vows...I feel liberty to speak freely with other "marrieds".

Just a friendly reminder {or maybe a heads up if you don't already know...} from my own personal experience.

Easter goes in the category of "awkward holidays" as a single who lives far away from family.

Mother's Day. Father's Day. Also in that category.

...Holidays that aren't "big" enough on the work calendar to get a day off for to maybe visit family...yet...everyone and their mother {literally} seems to be busy because family is in town or getting together.

There's something a little bit more lonely about knowing the majority of the church is with family. And mine were hundreds {sometimes thousands} of miles away. No one is free to go out to lunch. Or to text back. Facebook is bare. With the exception of pictures of families celebrating Easter.

Maybe its physically not possible to do anything but what your family has scheduled this year. Sometimes, that is entirely legitimate.

But. Maybe you're able to consider inviting a single with long-distance {or no} family to join you? Or maybe just snag coffee with them after relatives leave?

Just a thought. 

We are in fact, family in the Lord. And if your daughter or son lived far away...I imagine it would bless you if someone cared for them during the "awkward" holidays...

Saturday, March 9, 2013

The question of "Where?"

It's the most asked question about our desire to do cross-cultural mission's work.


This leads me to explain one of the things we love most about World Team.

World Team sees themselves as an aid. Helping local churches send missionaries across the Globe.

Many, many local churches around America {and around the world} don't have the knowledge, information, or cultural experience that it takes to effectively send missionaries cross-culturally.

But, World Team does.

So, sort of "holding the hand" of our local church, World Team will help us {Josh, me, and Warrington Fellowship Church} walk through this process...and that includes determining WHERE.

I am ridiculously and shamefully ignorant.

There are so many places, and peoples, cultures and even countries that I don't know about. It is daunting trying to "pick one" when I know very little {or nothing} about them.

...especially when we're planning on moving to this "unknown place" for decades...

This is where World Team comes in.

With their past and current knowledge of cultures and existing teams on various fields all over the world, they will help us as we walk through this process. Next Friday, March 16th, we will begin a week long Orientation. World Team will be watching us, interacting with us, assessing and counseling us in very deep, intentional ways. As they learn about our strengths and weaknesses, giftings and failings, at the end of the week- if they see fit to invite us to be apart of World Team-- they will suggest a number of places for us {and our local church} to prayerfully consider.

So at this point...we don't know yet. We don't know where in the world {literally} we will be going.

But, we are so blessed to have such enthusiastic support from both our local church and the members at World Team, and we are thrilled about deciding together, where "Josh and Janelle Morrison would 'fit' best as missionaries cross-culturally."

We invite you to join us as we pray for the Lord's leading!!

The honest truth.

It's only happened two or three times. Only two that I really remember.

My heart starts racing, my eyes get wide, my mind is whirling, and I start to get knots in my stomach or a lump in my throat-- just for like 15 seconds. And then it goes away. Sort of like a freaking out,  "AHHH!!"

We are going to be moving. To another country. Permanently. For the rest of our lives. Like, forever.

It's a really big deal.

This freaking out feeling is familiar. I felt it a lot more often while preparing to go to Wales. Thoughts like, "I'm giving up everything I love about my life."

I remember one night specifically before leaving Wales- at Starbucks with people who had just recently become dear, dear friends. I remember thinking, "I'll never do this with them again. This is the last time."

...I was right. By the time I got back to the States, various members of that Starbucks gathering had gotten married, or relationships had naturally shifted. I had to start all over with friends in a lot of ways when I returned.

In these 15 second freak outs, I dread nieces and nephews being born and growing up thousands and thousands of miles away. Or my own children- knowing their grandparents through skype or by pictures. I don't like the three months that separate family visits will I survive with three YEARS?!

I hate time differences and how impossible it is to keep in touch with people.

I don't want to eat new food-- I like the food I eat now. It's familiar. It tastes good. I know how to cook here. In the UK it was different- Celsius, strange measurements, and their shops lacked "normal" ingredients to recipes I knew how to make. I don't want to do that another language.

I don't want to learn a new language from scratch. I'm bad at studying and academics  I often end up in tears. And for the academic, it takes like 2-3 years to learn...sometimes 5 to be fluent. I literally won't be able to make friends cause I can't talk to anyone!!

As all of these whirl in my mind and I can tangibly feel the reality of moving...only a few things make them go away. But. They go away very, very quickly.

I must hate this life if I'm truly going to live for the next.

That doesn't mean I'm never going to love the people, the food, the terrain, the life we establish in whatever country we go to.

In fact, Wales turned from "the Scary Sacrificial Unknown" into "one of the dearest places on earth with very close friends" in a year and a half.

But it does mean "giving up" the sweet little life I had planned in my mind. A big house with a fireplace for tons of company and foster kids; family visits at our place for Holidays, having a little salon in our home to do hair while the kids are napping...and just enjoying life. Enjoying relationships. Loving on people. Ministering to them, witnessing to them...


There are people who do not have access to the Gospel.

Now that I am informed about "the unreached" will literally haunt me unless I go. I cannot with a clear conscience, stay here in the States knowing that there thousands and millions of people all over the world who have never HEARD the name of Jesus. Who CAN'T pick up a Bible because there ISN'T one in their language. And I'm not just talking about in some remote village. In countries you and I know about, have heard of, have seen on the news, and maybe even have vacationed to.

"How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?" Romans 10:14-15

The Lord will always be with me.

And this time, when I go. I will have my best friend with me. That makes a huge difference practically and culturally.

Josh and I are both excited about studying and learning more about Heaven; The New Earth. We want our hearts to be be further convinced-- that this just for the next.

Let's try to pack the place out.