As soon as the frost was over I saw it around me; people dove into the garden. Pruned, weeded and new plants were planted. I don't have such a green thumb myself, but now that we've been living in a house with a garden for a few years, I'm also giving it a try. I am learning more and more about the different plants and the best place to put them. While I planted a plant in the garden on my knees in the sun, my thoughts went out to member care for our iTeams workers. Our workers, all different little plants that spread blessing and bear fruit where they are placed. We as iTeams take care of them, so that they can (continue to) distribute.

During our Access training weekends, we look together with a (new) worker at what kind of plant they are. How are they put together? What qualities do they have and what are the challenges? In what environment do they flourish? What do they need to grow? When moving abroad, or also when changing the ministry, the plant moves from one place to another. It is being uprooted. This is often a very drastic process. Especially with emigration. Another country, another culture, another language, another source of food… everything is different. This process is repeated upon return to the Netherlands. During the period on the field, we look together at what it takes to take root somewhere (again). I know from experience that it often helps to know how such a process normally works. Then you know a little bit what to expect and that it's not strange what you feel. That's why we also share information about what workers can expect during the process of preparation, departure and return. When they are on the field, we call them regularly. We ask how things are going in their ministry, but certainly also how they feel and whether they are still getting the nutrients to stay healthy and grow themselves. We visit them so that we can see them in their environment. These are often very valuable moments!

Our heavenly father is the best gardener there is. He has made every plant and knows exactly which soil and location is best for that plant. God's desire is for every plant to be healthy and to flourish. He gives growth. What a privilege that we may work together with Him in this! We can water plants by praying and thinking and by encouraging. We are motivated to cut back on activities every now and then. We can encourage self-care to keep the plants healthy. We share this desire with our Heavenly Father; that every plant may bloom where it is planted. (by Joni Versteeg - iTeams NL member care coordinator)

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