What Sparked My Passion For Medical Missions

What Sparked My Passion For Medical Missions

In this week’s post our founder, Sheri Postma, shares about a highly impactful trip where her passion for medical mission trips grew significantly. 

Every mission trip experience leaves a mark for different reasons and each trip fans the flame that sparked my passion for medical missions. I play back memories of my time in each country like a film reel — seeing hearts change when they hear the Gospel for the first time, watching the carefree spirits of communities who lack in material possessions but have an abundance of love.

But, my trip in January 2011 stands out to me as being the trip that opened a chapter in my life to answer God’s call. It was when I traveled to Jamaica that sparked my passion for medical missions.


Our team served in Jamaica through several unique ways. We performed construction work at a school for the deaf, volunteered with the Eden school, and served children at a local orphanage. At the orphanage, the children greeted us with their smiles and were so happy to have us there. They loved hugging us and, at the same time, challenged us to games of kickball. It gave me so much JOY to serve God by reminding these children that God loves them and He sees their worth!

I spent a lot of time reading the Bible, praying, and hearing from God. I received clarity from the Lord that my focus should be on medical missions because of my nursing background and God’s gift of organization.

The call was clear, and my answer was “yes!”


There were many high school and college age students on this trip who worked hard that week shoveling and carrying buckets of dirt and rocks. But more importantly, they were carrying the Gospel into places that were searching for hope. Though I knew God’s Word, He spoke to me in a new way that week as well. In addition to those humbling experiences, another reason I enjoyed this specific trip was because my son Trent accompanied me for the second time. 

Since my time in Jamaica, I became more actively involved in planning and leading all future medical mission trips for my church and continue to willingly listen to God’s call.

My passion for medical missions continues to grow stronger with each trip I join!

The Mission Partners for Christ team would love to help you experience the joy of providing medical services, treatment, and education in underserved areas of the world. Please visit our VOLUNTEER page to find out how you can make your dreams of serving internationally a reality!

Encourage Medical Missionaries of the Future

Encourage Medical Missionaries of the Future

Have you considered how you–a current medical missionary–might encourage medical missionaries of the future? The pandemic has not ended our ability to reach people globally and participate in making a difference! We are blessed to be a blessing in many ways over the last year. This mercy and grace is continual.

Current medical missionaries might not yet be going on as many trips, but are still able to communicate with organizations and people in some of those places or help raise funds or donate supplies that support training doctors, staff, and patients in places where there is a lack of basic medical care. They are still able to prepare for a future trip and stay updated on things related to where they are going.

There are other things that current medical missions volunteers can do as well! We would like to share with you three things you can do to encourage medical missionaries of the future.

Be An Advocate

There might be medical residents who have not been a regular part of their faith community since they started to learn and practice, but they dig in and their faith deepens. As this happens, they seek new ways to give back to the world. Or there could be a registered nurse who has just moved to your city and is looking for an extra way to be plugged-in to a new volunteer opportunity. A newly certified medical aide might be unaware of how they can volunteer or participate in medical missions trips. A current medical missions volunteer like you could advocate for global medical care issues.

You can shine a light on the different ways these medical missions volunteers of the future could be a part of the changes they are eager to see. Your advocacy may encourage medical missionaries to seek out organizations where they can volunteer sooner rather than later!

Share Your Testimonies

Your testimonies can be the spark that lights up what is already in the heart of future medical missionaries who are not even grown up yet. Your compassion and dedication shines bright when you share the good things you have seen or heard. Not only that, but the glory of the gospel of Jesus is highlighted. Your words encourage those who have dreamed of becoming a doctor, nurse, medical aide, counselor, or being part of some kind of medical missions team, and stir up the faith of everyone who hears you. You could blog, ask for permission to share about things that have changed since your last trip in church, or find other creative ways to share your testimonies as part of your regular day. You could do something similar to what we do on our Facebook page, and post live videos sharing good news and prayers.

Educate

As medical care professionals and volunteers, there are things you stay updated about on a regular basis that other people might not. You could provide education about some of those things in a way that brings hope and clarity to people who might one day become a medical care professional or volunteer. What you share about malaria in a region where there is a lack of access to basic health care could stay on the heart of a person who is thinking about going back to medical school now that their children are grown up. Or someone who is considering which medical field to go into might be moved to hear about how some in hard-to-reach places are accessing glasses or dental work. You never know who might benefit from a bit of news that you share.

Mercy and grace are experienced every time there is a miracle in someone’s life. It is certainly a miracle any time someone receives much-needed basic medical care when they previously could not. It is also a miracle when someone decides to become a medical professional because they heard the story of someone like you. Or because they experienced the compassion of someone like you on the job.

Would You Like to Learn More?

Are you interested in learning more about our current upcoming 2021 trip to Benin? The date has changed to November 6-15, 2021, so there is plenty of time to sign up if you have considered it. If you would like to learn more about Mission Partners for Christ, we’d love to answer your questions. We look forward to hearing from you!

Of Good Report

Of Good Report

Once you decide you want to learn more and you go through the process of signing up and preparing to go, you will be so excited and joyful about the work you may do, that you wish the first day would arrive. Multiple things in life may compete for your focus till then. We would like to share three ways to focus on things of good report that will help keep the joy and excitement fresh while we wait.

Whatever is True, Whatever is Noble

Philippians 4:8 is one of the most encouraging Bible verses. It contains so much simple wisdom we can continue following every day.

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” Philippians 4:8 (NIV)

When we consider what we do as medical missions volunteers through the perspective of “whatever is true, whatever is noble”, we find we are able to think upon what God is doing already that we don’t know that is of good report. He has always done amazing things for us and with us. We can turn our focus to the opportunities around us to do good. Also, we can be thankful for the many ways we will get to serve again as we hope to one day.

Whatever is Pure, Whatever is Lovely

Medical professionals and volunteers are not immune to having a bad day. Everyone experiences moments of being annoyed or tired, for example, especially when multiple things simultaneously go differently than planned.

Before you are under such pressure is a great time to think about what strategies you might employ. Think of it like a tool in your self-care kit. One way to do this is that when ugly thoughts enter your mind, immediately evict them with opposing thoughts of what is pure and what is lovely.

For example, if you are working and suddenly find yourself concerned about how long it is taking to receive your passport in the mail, think about how wonderful it will be to present your new passport to the ticket agent one day. Think of the smiling face of a patient who has just received a good report. Consider the people in a community washing their hands in clean new water. There is so much good news to take note of each day!

Whatever is Admirable

The new year has begun, and with it come new opportunities to grow and use your gifts to spread the good news of Jesus and help provide basic health care in places where people are unable to access it. You can do this at home or where you work while you wait to go on a medical missions trip. All around you are valuable ways to make a difference. You can partner with someone who is already in another country, donate to them, help them brainstorm, or partner with people who are doing this too. You can donate to nearby groups or causes, volunteer to help someone where you are, start a blog, or do many things!

We believe every person has so much valuable experience to share, and we are thankful if you are interested in volunteering with us. We’ve seen many good things happen! Also, we are thankful for you however you join our endeavors to bring health, hope, and healing to parts of the world where people are unable to obtain basic medical care. While some difficult things such as COVID-19 are going on in the world today, there are also many good things going on in the world today too! It’s a big decision at times to focus on things of good report, but if you choose it, it’s also truly amazing! It will positively impact your life and the lives of others forever.

Want to stay updated and encouraged by live testimonies and hope-filled posts? The Mission Partners For Christ Facebook page is updated daily with new things!

3 Ways to Stir Up Your Faith

3 Ways to Stir Up Your Faith

Sometimes life doesn’t look like we planned.  When this happens, it may be tempting to get used to it or grumble about what has changed but it’s important to acknowledge things won’t stay this way forever. Instead of getting caught up in what isn’t going well, double down on your efforts to connect with God. 

Here are three key ways to stir up your faith:

1. Encourage Yourself in God’s Word

 We can receive encouragement every day by hearing God’s word. (Romans 10:17) Not just during this season or the next–but every day. In difficult seasons or good, by making a habit of spending time in God’s word, we prepare ourselves mentally and emotionally. It can be a challenge to want to hear what is in the Bible or in prayer at times, but when we are disciplined, then we do this. We know God loves us and always has the best in mind, and we love God too…and want the best to be on our minds as well!

 Discipline helps us form and maintain the habit of every day spending time in God’s word and becoming trained in it. It may not always be our first instinct to get ready for the day and then sit quietly with God, or to make that time later in the day. But if we do, we are thankful to notice God is still the best coach and mentor! He brings peace to every situation and certainly encourages us.

 

2. Spending Time in God’s Presence

 Faith is so often stirred by spending regular time in prayer, praise, thanksgiving, and quiet time with God. If you have gotten away from this, you can go right back to it and be strengthened once more. Romans 12:12 says to “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” When we make the effort to do this, it helps us be consistent in how we hope and where we place our faith.

 Discouraging news can be distracting, but we have a certain hope in Christ that encourages us. Time spent worshipping God and sitting in his presence changes things. You will notice there is so much to praise him and celebrate. He truly is good and he is for you!

 3. Remembering God’s Goodness

 God is bringing us through this season and any other season to come. It’s just like before! He’s answered our prayers before. We each have a history with him that shows us he is faithful. There are people reading this right now who have prayed about a thing and received the answer then, soon, or years later. God listened and did not forget. Not only that, but he over-delivers. So you can stir up your faith by recalling his goodness too. 

 

4. Trust That All Things Work Together for Our Good

It can be frustrating to wait. Waiting in line, waiting for an answer, waiting for the Internet to speed up. We have become so used to being able to order something with a few clicks on a website, and it’s here in a couple of days. But we know we can wait with a thankful heart. God knows what work needs to be done, and he knows just how to get all the pieces to come together in a wonderful way. Staying focused on God and his goodness might not always decrease the wait, but it will help you feel and remember how close he is to you, how good he is, and stir up your faith. 

 

 

 

 

Have you been looking for a way to stay involved with medical missions trips this year? Perhaps you could consider becoming one of our volunteers, a monthly supporter through donations, or sign up to go on a medical missions trip with us! Go to our website, Mission Partners for Christ, to learn more about how to volunteer or join us. Looking forward to seeing you soon! 

 

 

Sharing About Your Missions Trip When You Return

Sharing About Your Missions Trip When You Return

Sharing about your missions trip is a wonderful way to ignite a flame of inspiration that burns year-round

Whether you are a seasoned medical missions trip volunteer or about to go on your very first medical missions trip, one of the things you might be looking forward to doing once you are home is sharing about your missions trip.

There may be people in your church, workplace, family, peer group, or general community who are unaware of the different ways medical missions teams help or where we go. Some might be people who would be inspired to do more in their communities, homes or even overseas, when they hear about your story of how God moved through what you and your team did together with the people who were served. There are different things you can do to make it easier to share your story once you return home. We hope these three things will inspire you now, during the trip, and afterward.

Keep a journal

Keeping a journal is a brilliant way to have a record of the situations you encountered and how you worked through anything particularly challenging, how God was with you or someone else, and various other things like time spent with new friends or insightful moments and prayers. 

The act of writing before, during, and after the trip may serve to collect your thoughts, memories, and ideas into one central place where you can return to again to read and reflect or be inspired. It can serve as a note for future family members to read one day and get a glimpse of what it was like to serve as a medical missions volunteer. What you write in your journal can become a sort of “first draft” of what you will share with people in your church or community. 

Some good “before” trip journal posts could be questions or things you would like to notice or learn about while on the trip. During the trip, since you will be focused on serving more, you could jot down more of what you experience. Then after the trip, you could write about what you experienced and possibly also what you learned or what you would like to share with others.

Take lots of good pictures 

While you are on your medical missions trip, you may want to take lots of good pictures. If that sounds like you who enjoys having photographs to remember where you have been and who you have met, consider bringing a camera, batteries, charger, or battery pack with travel adapter (if needed). 

Though you will be working quite a bit of the time, there will be moments to snap photos of buildings, landscape, animals and plants, and you with your new friends and team members. This is a really fun part of it–all the people! Make sure you’re in some of the photos too. When you take photos, you will want to be mindful of privacy and how the photos will represent everyone involved in a respectful way. Your group leader is able to help you know if there are any other guidelines to observe. 

When you have lots of pictures, you will be able to remember the faces of the people you may write back to, the places you have been, and refer to it even years later when you want to pray for them or remember. Sometimes teams or individuals put all the photos together for use  in sharing about your missions trip to churches and other groups.   

Stay updated on the news of your team and new friends

Another great way to share about your missions trip is to stay updated on news of any changes or breakthroughs for your new friends overseas. When it is not unwise to do so, you can share the updates with loved ones, friends, or other members of your community–particularly those who already have expressed interest. People may hear the updates and praise God or go into prayer for them. They might also be inspired to one day go on a medical missions trip or somehow serve in a new way. You will have a friendship with someone who may also enjoy hearing about you.

Would you like to learn more about Mission Partners for Christ? You are welcome to visit and follow our Facebook page, Mission Partners for Christ, where we share encouraging posts and information. You could also head over to the FAQs page of this blog.

What Christian Medical Missions in a Closed Country Are Really Like

What Christian Medical Missions in a Closed Country Are Really Like

Recently a 15 person Christian medical missions team from MPFC visited an island in the Indian Ocean where Christianity is not welcome. This medical mission trip was different than others in the past as we had to discretely share the gospel in this closed country. We experienced powerful connections with local peoples who have little to no access to medical care. This blog post is a letter sent to our director by one of the members of that team. We are publishing it here to give you a first hand report of the unique experience of serving as Christians in a closed country. This is the first time that I am reflecting quietly on what happened on our trip.  It truly has changed my life. I have always had a heart for people since I work in the health field, but to go where healthcare and medicine is limited and to make a difference was something special.

Some of the most eye-opening experiences happened to me on this trip.

I cannot believe how most people take for granted the liberties and freedoms here in America. We can talk and display our love for Christ freely in the United States. We are not constantly reminded of the oppression with the call to Muslim prayer every morning and night. We can turn on the radio and listen to worship music or any of the hundreds of other stations. The island had one radio station and they could only hear it at night if they were lucky. We can go to school and pursue a higher education. The education system on the island only went up to high school for most and at an early age they are taught the Quran. We can turn on the light at all hours of the night and make a phone call, send an email with the click of a button. Most people on the island don’t have internet or even a computer.

We lost electricity several times, which is a common occurrence on the island.

Shopping is made so easy in America by using Amazon and your package can be on your doorstep in two days or less. The people are not able to make purchases online or even have a mailbox to receive mail at home. Our trash is collected every week and disposed of while the people on the island don’t even have a waste management system in place. Most of us have safe drinking water and a water heater.

People on the island don’t have a water treatment system or even efficient plumbing.

My heart was touched by the people of the island. Even with the lack of resources these people were so welcoming and content with what they had. They appreciated the least and shared the most.

The main priorities on the island was family and they had so much respect for the elderly, women and children.

We were greeted with floral leis and huge smiles. It is somewhat surreal being back home and not jumping in airplanes, vans and marching around with our bags trying to deliver care to the next village. God was truly with us and answered many of our prayers. One prayer of mine that was answered was having enough translators for us to be efficient with care and education.  We also prayed for protection.

Even though we were doing Christian medical missions in a closed country we were never in any danger on the trip.

The crime rate on the island is extremely low and we were cared for well by our local partners. The last day was truly the hardest for sure as we had developed close relationships and having to leave them. I can’t stop sharing my experiences with family and friends especially co-workers what it was like and most say they want to do something like that. Some people wonder why someone would go to a third world country like that until I share my experiences with them. I always tell people they can and to see for themselves!  Going on a mission’s trip has always been a lifelong dream of mine and cannot wait until I go on the next one.

Ready to experience medical missions for yourself? CLICK HERE to see upcoming trips!