Frontiers in Missions

Nick has a post on short term missions and how he doesn’t understand why people knock short term missions.   Well, I think that short terms are going to be the wave of the future – the need for long term established missionaries is still very great – but the simple fact of the matter is that short terms are here to stay – I personally think their positives can outweigh the negatives – when done right the right way.

But what I wanted to share is some of the ways missions is chaging and has changed.  In the old days missions was primarily about going in and starting churches, bible studies and Sunday schools and so on.

Well, these things are still very much well and good but the face of missions has changed quite a bit – now it is much more about the practical side of the work.  Whereas before it was about planting church and things (it still is especially among unreached peoples) now it is more about helping out practically in places and ways that can help in sharing the gospel – such as digging wells, setting up water purification systems, teaching English as a Second Language, helping the poor start up small businesses, doing medical missions stuff and the like.

And here is the thing, many of these things can be done or begun on a short term trip.

So I say definately – if you have the opportunity go ona shot term trip – really, it will be more for you than for them in the long run, but that is okay – you help them and they help you too!

Those were just a few thoughts I had on short term missions.

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2 responses to “Frontiers in Missions

  1. What about the potential problems these projects can make, especially with dependency? Often times Westerns do for a community what they could do for themselves (with proper guidance). Usually Westerners pour money into these short term trips so the locals take no initiative to bring the Kingdom of God closer to their neighborhood.

    Don’t want to be flat out negative. I agree that STM is here to stay, but lets be clear about what all the potential issues are and what needs to be done to bring God the glory in these quick, project based trips.

  2. Melissa, you raise good points and yes the problem of dependency is a vaild one – which further supports my point that the presence of long term established missionaires is vital to the success of an short term trip. This is why I personally feel that short term teams really do need to be working directly and closely with an established missionary in the area. If there isn’t an established missionary in the area, then perhaps a short term team can be utilized to help in getting a full timer placed there.

    For the sake of the glory of God, we can’t let ourselves be overwhelmed by the potential problems (he devil would love that) but instead work to see the gospel furthered in people’s lives and in those places it has yet to be proclaimed.

    I hope this helps some.

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