Monday, February 05, 2007

Winter Family Conference

John is in the middle
John is in the middle,
originally uploaded by Todd in Budapest.
Each year we have a conference for our missionaries in Europe. This year there are two they can choose from, one in the winter and one in the summer. We went to the winter one January 3-8, at Lake Balaton here in Hungary. It is always a great time for the families. The kids have their own program, like a Vacation Bible School. The teens have their own program and the adults get a chance to worship together in English and find some ‘refreshment and re-envisioning’ at the start of the year.
It was great time to get together with old friends from other fields around Europe and to meet some new friends as well. I got to know the way to the hospital fairly well. (Matt wasn’t the only injury.)
This year I became aware of something which was probably pretty obvious to everyone but me. When we first came to the field in 1995 these conferences were really refreshing and fun. Now, they are work. There is still some fun to be found there, but now it’s a time where I am working and ministering. I used to stay up all night, playing games and talking with people. Now I stay up late in meetings and then get up early for more meetings. I used to come away refreshed, but now I’m pretty worn out by the end of the week. I should have known that.
My role has become one where I give my mind, emotions and experiences to the people I serve so that they can be more effective workers in the harvest of our Lord. Conference is one of the best places to do that.

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