How could tools like the Emotionally Healthy Spirituality (EHS) course benefit the Facilitator M? Is it worth the effort as individual Ms and as the sending organization, Global Partners, to promote and offer the 8- or 9-week modules? There are so many tools at our disposal today. Individual Ms scour the internet looking for the latest missiological tools. We attend seminars, listen to podcasts, take advantage of shared leaning opportunities, and conferences, along with reading or listening to the latest books. So why take the time and invest the effort into committing to an 8-week course? I would propose that we cannot afford to not make the investment of time and effort. I also believe that we can garner a number of tools from EHS that apply directly to the idea of Facilitator M and that a number of the ideas, tools, and skills related to EHS make us better facilitators. Passing on these tools to those we work alongside of may make our co-laborers better facilitators as well.
EHS allows us to take a look at ourselves and the true nature of our relationship with our Heavenly Father. It focuses on who we are, who God is, and the nature of His love for us. So, how could that make us better facilitators, better missionaries, better friends and co-workers, better and more Christ centered children of The Father? Let me propose a few ways EHS might help.
It allows us to focus on that which is unseen. It enumerates the top 10 symptoms of emotionally unhealthy spirituality and brings to light the emotional and relational luggage we bring into our new life in Christ from our own earthly family. It helps bring to light how we deal with problems, criticism, confrontation, celebration, fear, anger, and many other emotions and circumstances as well as giving us insight into some of the why’s concerning how we react and respond to others and to situations and to how we view our own failures and successes. It does more than just point out the problems by suggesting the pathway forward to emotionally healthy spirituality.
In short this course asks us to 1)know ourselves so that we might know God better, 2)break the power of the past by looking backward in order to go forward, 3)move on through the walls that are holding us back in our emotional/spiritual lives by letting go of power and control, 4)accept/embrace grief and loss by surrendering to our limits, 5)discover the rhythms of daily office and sabbath in order to stop and breathe the air of eternity, 6) grow into an emotionally healthy adult, 6)develop and clarify our rule of life that is realized by loving Christ above all else.
Within the areas of realizing and clarifying the problem, self-examination, and the pathway to emotional health we’ll discover practical tools that help us see ourselves as God sees us, relate in love and communion with God through Christ, feel free to “be” instead of the constant need to “do” in order to earn or gain God’s love, act out of love and intention instead of react out of past experience, rest regularly in order to do more, realize our love for Christ out of being with Him instead of doing for Him (the Mary/Martha principle), embrace God’s desire to see us grow and mature and actually move forward in this instead of entering a push forward then being thrown backward cycle.
You may say, “well that is all well and good, but how does that help us as facilitator Ms?” First of all, being emotionally healthy and the day-to-day difference that would bring to many of us would be sufficient evidence that it would help us to be better facilitator missionaries. But on top of that, in our facilitator M roles, we would be able to truly model rest in the Lord, Sabbath taking, healthy problem solving, dealing with disagreements head on and in healthy ways, faith in God and not in ourselves, delegation, giving away power and responsibility, not having to control or be tempted to retake control, allowing failure in order that true success may be achieved, and removing our ego from the ministry that God shares with us. This allows us to really let God be God in our lives. It allows me to decrease and Him to increase so that day by day we reflect more of Him and less of ourselves to those we serve and serve with. It allows us to ask questions we don’t have the answers for and not be anxious that we may appear to be weak or not always right. This allows us to truly say “how can WE?” and accept the answer, release the control, give away the responsibility, love the person, pass on the baton and in the end hear others ask the question “how can we?”. Isn’t that what the facilitator M is all about?