Tag - preparing for missions

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Does God Care Where I Go?
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The Business Secret Every Missionary Knows
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How to Identify Missionaries in Your Church
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When Your Missionary Calling Hits a Dead End
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Preparing for Missions: 6 Tips for a Healthy Goodbye
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How to Handle Culture Stress
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Actionable Ways to Get Kids Involved in Missions
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How High Schoolers Can Prepare for Missions
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What It’s Like to Be a Single Missionary
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How to Choose a Short-Term Mission Trip

Does God Care Where I Go?

missions destination
Many prospective missionaries feel God is leading them to move overseas, but don’t know where. Does that even matter? Consider the following perspective. Photo by TEAM

Many of us prefer to deal with situations in black-and-white terms and steer clear of the gray areas in the Bible. We like rules, even if we fail to stick to them. But there are areas where Scripture is less clear about what to do, like, “What college should I go to?” or “Who should I marry?” For missionaries, the question is often, “Does God care where I go overseas?” Many prospective missionaries feel God is leading them to move their lives across the world, but don’t know where. They may have some thoughts of where they would like to go,…

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The Business Secret Every Missionary Knows

VUCA environment
Following God into new situations and cultures will very likely catapult you into a VUCA environment. What does that mean for a missionary's journey? Photo by TEAM

“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” That’s the proverb we quote when it comes to making something good out of a bad situation — something sweet out of something sour. But what about intentionally picking lemons so you can make lemonade? Global corporations do that! The international market environment is described as volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA). In other words, it hands out lemons and demands leaders who can make lemonade. And it turns out that the best way to develop those demanded abilities is to work in a situation that demands those abilities. Some large corporations are…

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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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When Your Missionary Calling Hits a Dead End

ways to support missionaries
After many closed doors, Kristine wondered if she would ever make it to the mission field to fulfill her missionary calling. Until the right door opened. Photo by TEAM

In November 2014, I was in a classroom that had a piano with a wooden cutout of a sheep leaning against it. It was as if the sheep was cautiously peering around the corner of the piano. In that moment, I thought, I don’t want to be like that sheep. I want to be the kind of sheep that goes charging around the corner if I think I hear my Shepherd’s voice. Have you ever been that sheep, longing to follow the Shepherd, thinking you heard His voice, but hesitating because you’re not quite sure? I have — many times….

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Preparing for Missions: 6 Tips for a Healthy Goodbye

preparing for missions
Preparing for missions? Moving overseas and saying goodbye to the people and places you love is not easy. Here are six tips on how to leave well.

When Jesus told us to “go to all the world,” “go” meant leave!   Leave home. Leave family. Leave what’s familiar, and go to what is strange to you. For a missionary, all the studying, fundraising, preparation and planning marches inexorably to this point: time to “go.” Two letters. One small step into the aircraft door. One big turning point. That moment can be an intensely lonely moment, both for those leaving and those who are left.  However, both parties are in company with a lot of people in today’s world. Jerry Jones, a blogger who lives in China and…

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How to Handle Culture Stress

culture stress
Feeling tired, drained or frustrated while living overseas? You might be experiencing culture stress. Here's how to handle it and adapt to your new normal. Graphics by TEAM

In the last 18 years, I have traveled to countries on nearly every continent. Every country I traveled to has taught me about culture and about myself. Through my travels, I have experienced things completely foreign to my definition of normal. I  have bathed and washed my hair in a bucket, slept in a treehouse, eaten with monkeys, been roommates with scorpions, used two boards as a toilet, traveled through the mountains in the back of a pickup truck and eaten foods I can’t pronounce. All of these experiences, while exciting, triggered culture stress in me, which can affect your…

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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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How High Schoolers Can Prepare for Missions

high school prepare for missions
Even if missions is years away, preparing doesn't have to wait. Here are four things high school students can do today to prepare for missions. Photo by TEAM

As a missions coach, I regularly meet high school students who are exploring what role missions could play in their life after graduation. For many, the likelihood of serving overseas long-term is years away. But that doesn’t mean preparing for ministry has to wait. Here are four things high school students can do right now to get ready for a future in missions. 1. Form a close-knit Christian community In his book, Life Together, Dietrich Bonhoeffer reminds believers that community with Christ, each other and the world around us is vital to making decisions and pursuing goals.   Living life…

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What It’s Like to Be a Single Missionary

single missionary
The fear of staying single keeps some potential missionaries off the field. Read what six workers say it's really like to be single and serve. Photo by TEAM

She’s known as the MacGyver of missionaries. She spent 15 years traveling with nomadic cattle-herders, single-handedly wired her desert home with solar panels and still has her water delivered by donkeys. But Tillie Tiller’s adventurous life in Chad slammed into a wall when she turned 39. That’s when she realized she wasn’t getting married. “In so many missionary biographies, in the middle of nowhere, a single guy shows up, and it is a perfect pairing. … Up until age 38, I thought it was going to happen,” Tillie says. “At age 39, I was pretty sure it wouldn’t happen, so…

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How to Choose a Short-Term Mission Trip

choose a mission trip
With thousands of mission trip opportunities available to you, how do you find the best fit? Here's some practical advice to help you choose a mission trip with confidence. Photo by TEAM

A new interest in missions is often accompanied with an urgent desire to just go. But choosing a mission trip isn’t always easy. Where will you go? To do what ministry? And when? As you process through the thousands of opportunities available to you, here’s some practical advice on how to choose a mission trip. Pray About Three Topics It sounds like a Christian platitude, but really, the first thing you should do is pray. Prayer can help you discern your direction, but more importantly, prayer centers you on God’s direction. Here are three prayer topics to pursue as you…

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