I recently had the privilege of sitting down with Lisa, a member of the GRC staff. Lisa has served overseas with her husband, Scott, for over twenty years. As we talked, we got on the topic of how we can show care for one another. Here is what Lisa shared from her years of experience ministering to her co-workers on the field:
1. Lead by example. Be aware of and practice member care techniques like: taking breaks to rest, establishing and maintaining healthy boundaries, and creating a balance of work and play. Let others see you taking care of yourself and let them know why you are doing those things. Your initiative to take proper care of yourself can not only serve as a model for others, but can also give “permission” for others to take care of themselves as well.
2. If you can, help others take a much needed break. This might involve babysitting, house sitting, pet sitting, or even exchanging houses for a week. Or passing on good places to go to take a break. Those who are new to a location may need a break but may not know a safe place to go to take that break. Sharing your experience and knowledge in this area can help others stay healthy.
3. Help turn each other back to the Father. It can be easy to get caught up in the day to day stress and forget the reason why we are here. Helping point each other back to our Father and reminding each other of who He is can help us refocus and de-clutter our lives of things that are getting in the way of growing in our relationship with our Creator.
4. Initiate communal times of relaxation and fun. Invite each other for a meal, or “spa” day, or a game or movie night. Since some people recharge best when surrounded with people this may give a much needed boost to those around you while also helping you build a stronger community. Remember, times together do not have to be planned out or elaborate to be beneficial.
5. Just listen. Sometimes the greatest gift you can give to someone is a listening ear. When listening, listen without judgement. Listen with kindness and gentleness in mind. Treat others’ perspectives and experiences with respect. Be patient and have grace with others’ feelings, even if they seem insignificant or like an overreaction to you. Whenever appropriate, keep what they have to share confidential to build trust and create a safe space to talk.