Category - Sending Churches

1
Why “Us vs. Them” Won’t Reach a Lost World
2
Giving Your Community a Voice in Your Calling
3
Why Guilting People into Missions Ultimately Fails
4
How to Identify Missionaries in Your Church
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7 Ways to Support Missionaries
6
15 Questions to Ask Someone After a Mission Trip
7
8 Things Missionaries Wish Their Supporters Knew
8
Actionable Ways to Get Kids Involved in Missions
9
Why We Don’t Send Missionaries
10
3 Reasons Why Your Church Needs a Missions Committee

Why “Us vs. Them” Won’t Reach a Lost World

us vs. them
How does an "us vs. them" mentality limit our call to missions? Keep reading to find out. Photo by TEAM

In Luke 10, Jesus calls the crowds to “[love] your neighbor as yourself,” prompting a religious leader to ask, “And who is my neighbor?” Luke tells us the lawyer intended the question to “justify himself.” How does the question justify the questioner? By limiting those he was responsible to love. In an earlier post, I shared my belief that, when it comes to mobilizing people toward global missions, we often fail because we tend to wield the law instead of meeting people with the Gospel. The religious ruler of Luke 10 asks a question that naturally rises out of law-based…

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Giving Your Community a Voice in Your Calling

calling and community
Does your relationship with your church impact your involvement in missions? Keep reading to see how your calling and community are often intertwined. Photo by TEAM

“What does your church say about going to Ghana?” Hmm…. Now that was a question I hadn’t considered before. What did my church have to say about what country I was serving in and what I was doing while there? When someone asked me that question after I returned from a summer mission trip to West Africa, I was a little surprised. It’s not that my church wasn’t involved in sending me. They had financially supported me and told me they were proud of me. But when I stopped and thought about it, I realized I hadn’t taken a moment…

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Why Guilting People into Missions Ultimately Fails

missions motivations
When you think about your involvement in missions, are you motivated by the law — by a sense of duty — or by the grace of the Gospel? Photo by TEAM

In our Sending Church Training events, I often lead a session about “embracing spiritual conviction.” Every time I facilitate this session, I knowingly disappoint the attendees. Here’s why. In a room full of church missions leaders, everyone thinks “embracing spiritual conviction” means they’ll learn ways to motivate their congregations toward missions. In that environment, I let everyone down by refusing to talk about behaviors and focusing instead on affections. When it comes to mission motivators, it doesn’t really work to only think about behaviors — what people do — without also thinking about affections — why they do what they…

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How to Identify Missionaries in Your Church

How to Identify Missionaries In Your Church
Whether it be a one-on-one meeting or a church-wide event, begin to develop ways that you can identify missionaries in your church. Photo by TEAM

If I were to give you a one-question test right now, how would your church fare? Here’s the question: Are there people in your church interested in sharing the Gospel cross-culturally? If you are like many churches, your answer might be, “I don’t know.” A commitment to mission work often involves a deeply personal call from the Holy Spirit. But because everyday communities can see how an individual is gifted, church communities have the remarkable opportunity to call out the cross-cultural gifts they see in potential missionaries. What does this actually look like? Here are four ways you can proactively identify and prepare your congregation…

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7 Ways to Support Missionaries

ways to support missionaries
Your support of foreign missionaries is vital to the growth of the kingdom. But how? Discover 7 ways that you can intentionally support missionaries. Photo by TEAM

Imagine you are a new missionary. Living in a foreign land and adopting a new culture for the sake of the kingdom is a dream — one that you’ve worked toward for years. However, before too long, feelings of culture shock and isolation begin to set in. Language barriers and foreign social etiquette make you ache for renewed connections with friends and family back home. You may even wonder if you made the right decision in coming. This scenario is fairly common for those serving abroad and can easily lead to burnout. That’s why it’s up to us as supporters…

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15 Questions to Ask Someone After a Mission Trip

questions to ask after a mission trip
Know a team, friend or loved one returning from a mission trip? Curious to know how it went? Help them process their experience with this list of 15 thoughtful questions to ask after a mission trip.

“It was life-changing.” “It was amazing.” “It’s hard to put into words.” If you’ve ever asked a short-term missionary about their experience, you’ve probably heard one of these statements in response. Returning short-term missionaries often benefit from processing their experiences. In fact, TEAM recommends each of our short-term missionaries debrief from their trip with both their missions coach and their church community. However, helping someone process a cross-cultural mission trip isn’t always as easy as it sounds. Often, the questions asked are so broad that missionaries struggle to articulate answers without going on an hour-long tirade. Short-term missionaries also tend…

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8 Things Missionaries Wish Their Supporters Knew

For many missionaries, it’s difficult to share the nitty-gritty of missionary life with their supporters. To give voice to the unsaid, here are eight things missionaries wish their supporters knew.

For every missionary sharing the Gospel cross-culturally, there is a team of people making the work possible from sending churches to the many individuals praying and giving financially. No one can serve alone. But even though missionaries share a tight bond with their supporters, it can be hard to honestly share the ins and outs of missionary life. To shine a light on the things unsaid, we asked several missionaries, “What do you wish your supporters knew?” Their answers might surprise you. “Sometimes I feel like I’m not adding anything to my team.” Going from a life of ministry in…

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Actionable Ways to Get Kids Involved in Missions

how to get kids involved in missions
Trying to get the kids in your life involved in missions? Here are actionable strategies with links to resources to help you get started. Photo by TEAM

Jon Acuff writes about a conversation he had with his daughter when she was five. Flipping through a magazine, she saw a picture of a starving child and asked her dad, “That’s pretend, right?”  Acuff writes that what he really felt she was asking was, “You’re not okay with that, are you? Are you doing anything about this, Dad?” Over the years, adults may become desensitized to the suffering around us, but often children can bring us back to reality: We’re not okay with that, are we? Are we doing something about it? When it comes to local and global missions,…

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Why We Don’t Send Missionaries

send missionaries
Missions agencies help assess, prepare and place missionaries, but they don't send them. And this distinction is more than just semantics. Photo by TEAM

It’s common vernacular to call missions agencies like TEAM “sending agencies.” But really, this label is a misnomer. While agencies help assess, prepare and place missionaries, they do not send them. And this distinction isn’t just a matter of semantics. Knowing who sends missionaries is a critical distinction that shapes our understanding of the local church’s critical role in global missions. At TEAM, we say that our purpose is to help churches send missionaries. That may sound simple, but those words are intended to convey an idea that is fundamental to everything we do. We believe the church is the…

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3 Reasons Why Your Church Needs a Missions Committee

missions committee
Whether the word committee makes your cringe or cheer, your church needs a dedicated group of people to focus on global missions. Photo by TEAM

It’s easy to assume someone at your church will do mission work. After all, isn’t the church charged with the Great Commission as one of Jesus’ last commands on earth? But the reality is, living in obedience to God’s mission takes intentionality. Having point people focus on how the church is called to share the gospel, send new missionaries and care for sent ones is critical to any congregation. In many churches, this group of people is called the missions committee. Whether your church loves committees or feels like the word is old-fashioned, there is just something effective about a group…

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