Click on a week below to see previous articles
Week 1: Next Step
Week 2: Sharing your Story
Week 3: Processing Your Experience
How does a returnee share their experience with their spouse? How can they make their spouse feel more a part of the mission? Sometimes only the husband or the wife may be able to go on the mission trip. In other cases, the short-term mission trip may be more the "wife's thing" or the "husband's thing." In either case, you would not want the short-term mission experience to be a wedge in the relationship. If anything, you would like to see it contribute to the enrichment of the marriage, and the couple's commitment to Jesus Christ.
This tool is designed to help you think about how you can be actively involved in serving now that you have returned from your short-term mission (STM). It requires no commitment; it is simply a tool to help you assess where your thinking is related to missions.
Upon re-entry, many short-termers encounter reverse culture stress. There are several contributing factors to re-entry stress or reverse culture stress. One is that you are being caught by surprise; you do not anticipate change, and consequently are unprepared to cope. Another factor is value conflict. Your values, once taken for granted and even highly cherished, now seem of lesser significance or of little importance at all. Your way of thinking, your manner and your responses to many situations have been changing. Often these changes are not apparent until you are back in your own culture.
There will be many demands upon your time as soon as you return from your short-term mission, but reflection is important for long-term impact. So often we bounce from one event in our lives to another without taking time to process. We allow experiences to rush over us, but remain unchanged. We must first be still before God and acknowledge Him. We should also intentionally set aside time to be still and reflect about the short-term mission experience. This may not appear to be urgent compared to immediate responsibilities facing you upon return, but it most definitely is important if your life is going to be transformed as a result of the experience.