Have you ever had a bad day? Have you ever gotten up on the wrong side of the bed? I am sure that you have. Missionaries have bad days too! Most people don’t like to tell others that they are having a bad day. They just want to be left alone and get through the day because they know the tomorrow might be better. Missionaries don’t like advertising their bad days as well. When they have a bad day, they can’t just pout and wait for tomorrow. They can’t just stay in bed all day. They have commitments that they have made many months in advance. There is a lot riding on the completion of these commitments. When missionaries have a bad day, they must suppress it and perform professionally. However, even the most disciplined of missionaries can’t suppress a bad hair day and it comes to the surface. When it does, they wish people could understand that they are no different than other people except they have more pressure on them than a normal family does.
Bad hair days can be influenced by the amount of pressure applied to a family. The more pressure you are under, the more bad hair days you will have. Seldom does a person have bad hair days when life is wonderful and everything is working great. Pressure and stress usually produces bad hair days. Everybody has pressure and stress. Missionaries don’t have any more or less than most people endure. However, their stress and pressure is certainly different than anything most families endure. Their stress comes from the way that they live and work. The things that most people envy about the missionary life are usually the things that are the biggest problem for them.
People see the missionary life as one big permanent vacation; traveling all around seeing all of the sites of the country. They wish that they could do the same thing, but they are bound to get up early in the morning to go to the same old job so they can barely make enough to live–stress. Although it is true that the missionary travels all of the time, and goes all over the country, it is this very lifestyle that creates all of the problems for the missionary. They have to get up early in the morning to drive all day and all night to make it to the next meeting. Perhaps their offering was low, so they barely have enough money for gas and have to skip meals to make up the difference–stress. If they have children, they have to try to have home schooling classes in the car while they are on the road–stress. They are often asked to perform a song when they don’t really feel like singing–stress. They have to call pastors from behind the steering wheel–stress. They have to fill out ridiculously long applications just to present their ministry one night in some churches–stress. They are ridiculed and pushed aside at pastors meetings because they are looked up as money grubbers, when all they are doing is trying to get support–stress. Their family is in a different house, hotel or the floor of the car every night–stress. They have to send out tremendously large newsletters every month–stress. In all these cases, stress influences weather you they a bad hair day or not.
To many people, their view of a missionary is that they aren’t supposed to have bad days. They are preachers. They sit around all day reading the Bible like we would like to do. They are in the full time ministry. Who could have a bad hair day if all they had to do was travel around leading people to the Lord? If they could, Missionaries would like people to know that they have bad days too. But like others, they won’t advertise their bad days. Their bad days are not better; they are not worse; they are just different.
Things your Missionaries wish you knew but were afraid to tell you.