PREPARING TO LAUNCH
Preparing to launch is the final season for your person in their home culture before moving to their new location. This season is crucial for your person as they say goodbye to all things familiar and prepare for all things unknown. This season is also crucial for you as the sender as you also prepare to say goodbye to your friend or family member and what has been familiar to you. Having intentional time and conversations together to strengthen your relationship and understand each other’s feelings will be so beneficial for both of you. Your support during this season can help your person both logistically and emotionally and allow them to land in their new location as prepared and healthy as possibly.
What does this season look like?
- Receiving necessary training
- Cross-cultural / Language Acquisition Training : Ministry Training International (MTI)
- CMM Staff Training
- Security Training
- Selling of Possessions
- RAFT (see appendix)
- Saying goodbyes to people, places, belongings
- A period of waiting to launch after all training is complete and possessions are sold
What are common emotions of this season?
**During this season, it is common to feel a range of emotions. These emotions can often feel in contrast to one another and your person may be feeling some or all of these emotions at the same time.
- As your person gets closer to launching to their new role/location, feelings of excitement often grow as they anticipate all that awaits them.
- Saying goodbye to friends, family, home, community, etc. can be very difficult even when they are excited about what comes next.
- The logistics of packing and selling belongings can be tiring and stressful.
- Staying with friends and/or family can create strain on marriages and relationships and can add stress during this time.
- Knowing God will provide everything they need in their new context can bring comfort and peace.
- Attending various trainings can leave your person feeling prepared for the new experiences that await them.
- Recognizing there are so many unknowns lying ahead can cause some anxiety.
Thoughts from our staff:
“When we finally did get our launch date, it was less than two weeks away, and my reaction surprised me; instead of rejoicing at the news, I felt completely numb. After over two years of preparing for this moment I thought that I would be overjoyed, jumping out of my chair with enthusiasm, thanking God and rejoicing that He brought me this far and was bringing everything full circle. Instead, tears came to my eyes. All I could think about was the people I was leaving behind and how I wouldn’t have enough time to say goodbye to them the way I wanted to. The people I was the most thankful for in those busy and unexpected two weeks before I launched weren’t those who painted a silver lining over my sorrow, but those who instead empathized with me. The best support during this time was understanding.” —Kelsey, overseas field staff
How can I pray during this season?
- Pray for the logistics of selling possessions, homes, cars, etc. and for provision of these things temporarily as they wait to launch
- Pray the time in training would be helpful and give them confidence as they prepare to launch
- Pray for good goodbyes and closure with friends, family, and places
- Pray for unity in marriage
- Pray for God’s protection spiritually as Satan ramps up his attacks and lies during this time
How else can I offer support?
- Help them sell their possessions and pack their belongings
- Host a yard sale
- Provide boxes or suitcases for packing
- Watch their children as they spend a day packing
- Ask them how they would like to be sent off
- Plan a farewell gathering
- Send them off at the airport
- Review the RAFT document and find ways to connect with them to strengthen the relationship before they launch.
- Take initiative to invite them to do something fun and continue to make memories before their transition.
- Ask how they would like you to support them when they first arrive.
- Listen to the feelings and emotions of your person. Offer empathy for any emotion they may be feeling.
Helpful truths and Scripture for this season:
*Reminding your person of God’s truth and promises is the best way to support and care for your person. As you pray and listen to them, ask God for His words to share with them. These are some helpful places to start.
- “If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.” —Psalm 139:9-10
- “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God has prepared in advance for us to do.” —Ephesians 2:10
- “Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth. Sing to the Lord, praise His name; proclaim His salvation day after day. Declare His glory among the nations, His marvelous deeds among all peoples.” —Psalm 96:1-3