One very common, and understandable, concern we hear from potential applicants to one of our medical mission trips is, “will I be protected from Covid?”
The Covid-19 pandemic has cost too many lives and left many more grieving and dealing with the impact of long-term health conditions connected to the pandemic. There is a common feeling of anxiety when venturing out into the world because we can see that there are risks to our health that we’ve never had to worry about before. Many people want to know that their health is a priority when volunteering to join us on one of our medical mission trips.
Friends, we want to assure you that we hear you and we share your concerns. Covid is one thing that we at Mission Partners For Christ take very seriously.
We have done our due diligence to ensure that every person who travels with us will be safe on the trip. During Covid, we have gone on multiple mission trips that required testing before, during, and after the trip. Not one person has gotten infected during their time serving with us.
So today, let’s talk a bit about how we, as an organization, safeguard against infection.
We Listen to Health And Government Authorities
When preparing to travel abroad, we listen to the advice and requirements of our local health authorities who can advise us of the best way to protect ourselves from becoming sick with Covid.
We also pay close attention to the requirements of the countries we plan to visit. Since each nation has its own requirements with regard to Covid-19, it is important that we follow their requirements closely; some countries require testing on arrival and some require proof of vaccination.
Two of the resources we use, Sherpa and CDC, help us to stay informed as to the current state of the global pandemic in the nation that we are planning to travel to. We also get our information directly from the ministry of health of the nation we are planning to travel to.
Another helpful resource that we use is the Worldometer statistics website which keeps track of Covid-19 trends around the world.
These resources help us to decide if a trip will be safe for our volunteers or if it is better to reschedule.
We Have Requirements For Our Volunteers To Follow
The first and best step in our Covid preparedness plan is to remind our volunteers that they can do a lot to protect themselves. In order to protect against potential Covid-19 infections, we require that our volunteers follow best practices as listed by organizations like the CDC.
Several examples that we ask of our volunteers are as listed:
– Finish their vaccine series at least 2 weeks before our travel date. We also recommend additional booster shots when available and recommended by health professionals.
– Submitting documentation to Mission Partners For Christ that the vaccination requirement has been met. This is not only to meet legal requirements set forth by the countries we serve, it also provides assurance to the rest of our team that everyone is vaccinated. – Sign our waiver acknowledging the responsibility to monitor one’s own health and quarantine when necessary. This places the onus of responsibility back onto the individual team member to care for their own bodies and protect the rest of the team by not needlessly exposing them to possible infection.
We Talk With Our Ministry Partners
One important part of our decision-making process is to remain in close contact with our ministry partners who are based in the communities we plan to serve. They are able to give us a better understanding of what is happening in the area. They can alert us as to the infection rate numbers within the community and what precautions they advise. We will also decide together if it is safe to travel in light of whatever the current Covid-19 situation might be.
To be perfectly transparent with you, reader, we will never make the call to travel when we believe that it is unsafe for us to do so. In the past couple of years, we have had to make the difficult choice to postpone trips due to infection rates. While we hate to have to make that call, we recognize the importance of prioritizing our team’s health.
We also believe that God will re-open that door to travel back to these places when it is safer.
This is the most important part of the process. We make a point to go to God in prayer. We ask for wisdom in making the best choice for our team and for the community we wish to serve. It is our deepest desire to go if it is at all possible.
Our founder, Sheri Postma had this to say,
The most important thing we do is PRAY! God is calling us to serve those with limited access to medical care and unreached with the gospel. We can trust that God will protect us from coming in contact with someone with covid.
Continuing to discuss the importance of why we must go when it is safe to travel, Sheri also says,
Poverty has risen significantly during the pandemic. Families have to make a decision about obtaining medication for their illness-malaria, high blood pressure, or feeding their family. During each of our trips, we bring a great deal of medication but most importantly we provide very necessary health education. Medical missions is needed more now than ever before.
Will You Join Us?
Knowing that we will prioritize your health and safety on our medical mission trips, we hope that you will consider joining us on an upcoming medical mission trip.
Our next trip to Ethiopia is already booked up. However, we have another trip coming up in February to a country called Guinea. During our time in Guinea, we will serve in 4 different areas amongst this people group. We will provide screenings, treatment, and health education. We pray that they see the love of Jesus and through this outreach, many will be saved. The deadline to apply for this trip is November 12, 2022 – and is sure to fill up fast. Don’t miss out.
If you are unable to make it to Guinea with us, never fear! You can still join us on a medical mission trip. We have a few more trips planned for the 2023/2024 season, several of these trips were rescheduled from early on in the pandemic. Keep your eyes peeled to our website and our social media accounts for more information!
Most of us who have spent any real amount of time within the Christian tradition understand that missions and evangelism are a cornerstone of our faith. We have heard the sermons and the calls for people to staff short-term mission trips our entire time within the church. Many of us have grown up admiring the missionaries who went before us like Gladys Aylward and Jim Elliot. To imagine a church without missions is nearly impossible.
But why do we do it? Why do we bother with Medical Mission trips? do Christians send out teams throughout the year to go to every corner of our own country as well as countries around the world? The work is hard, there are language barriers, cultural barriers, and all kinds of things that would prevent people of lesser convictions from going. Yet, we still go. Why?
Well, let’s talk about that.
We Go To Tell People About Jesus
It’s hard for us to imagine here in the USA that there are entire people groups alive today who have never heard the name, “Jesus” mentioned in their presence. There are adults who have grown up and had children and grandchildren who have never heard about what Jesus has done for them and their loved ones. We go to share the gospel with them so that they can rejoice and worship the Lord with us.
In a recent Facebook Live video, our founder, Sheri Postma, spoke about the importance of Medical Mission trips to spread the gospel. She said, “Can you imagine never hearing the gospel message? Never to have heard about Jesus? Can you believe that in this year of 2022, there are people around the world who have never heard the gospel message?”
This is why we go.
We go because we cannot wrap our minds around never hearing the gospel. We know how much peace and comfort it brings to our lives to be able to go to God in prayer, to cast all our cares upon Him, and to be able to worship Him.
If we could bring that joy to just one other person, why would we not go?
We Go To Share the Love of God
Mission trips aren’t just about sharing the gospel with those who need Jesus, it is also about living out the gospel. It is not enough to simply tell someone that Jesus loves them and died for them, we also have to show them that this love is real in the way that we behave and in how we serve and minister to them.
Mission Partners For Christ exists to fill a very real need in this world. Our organization was created because there are entire people groups all over the world who lack adequate access to healthcare. We go to show them that God doesn’t just care about their souls, He cares about their bodies, their health, and their well-being.
We partner with organizations all over the world to ensure that the under-served populations that we are ministering to will have access to professionals like eye doctors and dentists as well as techs, pharmacists, doctors, and nurses of all specialties. For some people, it may be the first time in their lives that they will be interacting with a medical professional.
In this very real way, we are sharing the love of our wonderful Savior with others. The good news isn’t just soul-saving, it is life-changing.
The Bible tells us very clearly that we, the believers and the holders of the Good News, have a duty to share it with the world rather than hold it close to ourselves.
Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
How Can You Get Involved?
Now that you’ve read about all the reasons why we go, perhaps you find yourself thinking, “I want to go preach the gospel and share the love of Christ with those who need it the most! But where do I start?”
Good news – Mission Partners for Christ can use your help as we work to ensure that every soul has the chance to meet Jesus.
We have several ways for you to get involved in sharing the gospel and the love of Christ with unreached people groups. You can donate, join our prayer team, or volunteer to join us in the mission field.
Would you like to join us on our next medical mission trip? You can check out our latest opportunities to serve by clicking here. We hope to see you soon!
Have you learned something new in today’s post? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
There are seasons in every Christian life that might see us going out into the world to share the love of Jesus, and there are seasons where we might be called to stay home while others go. For those of us that remain behind, it is important to note that we are still called to serve. But our service might look different than the missionary in Africa.
Our service might appear to be quieter, but it is certainly no less significant. For every missionary called abroad, many more of us are called to work that is just as important: supporting the people in our lives as they serve on their mission trips.
Support comes in many different forms. Today, I want us to look at a few ways we can support the missionaries in our lives.
We often hear the phrase, there is power in prayer. While we believe there is power, it isn’t in the prayer itself, it is in the God to whom we pray. This is the God who shaped the universe, set each star in its proper place, and crafted the mountains. This same God not only created you, me, and every human being throughout history, but He also ordained the times and places in which we would live so that we might find Him (Acts 17:26-27)
It is this God that people serve when they embark on their mission trips. They seek to bring His truth to those who need it the most and to love them in action as they live out the gospel. Remembering them in prayer as they do this important work is to hold them in your hearts and to connect to their work in the best possible way.
Help With Fundraising and Communication
This is an often overlooked area for many Christ servants who need support from their loved ones and their communities.
Samuel Werner, guest posting on Sharon K Hoover’s blog, wrote about the importance of assisting missionaries with things like setting up websites, creating fundraisers, tracking donations, etc… Most who choose to serve have limited time to keep track of updating supporters or fundraising. Taking a little time out of your day, week, or month to assist them with these things would be a greatly supported gesture.
“A huge help for me in the past was I had someone help me with my mailing newsletters. I would send them an email with the writing and a few pictures. They’d take it and form a pretty little newsletter to send out to my supporters. They’d even keep track of the mailing list for me. That was a HUGE blessing. There is a lot more to being a missionary than just ministry. Offer your services. Just ask, “Is there anything I can do to help you?”
Do you have organizational skills or the ability to help set up a GoFundMe? You can put those skills to work by supporting your missionary loved one.
This is perhaps the most common way to support those who are sent out into the world to share the love and gospel of Jesus. But it remains one of the most important forms of support. Without the generosity of believers, like yourself, many mission trips just could never happen. It costs money to travel. It costs money for lodging. It costs money for supplies.
Arrange Housing For Furloughs
For those who serve on a full-time basis, furloughs are a big part of their work. Popular to popular opinion, furloughs aren’t just a break from being in the mission field, although that can be part of it. Furloughs are also important for recruiting new people to the team, fundraising, and more.
Dr. Don Sisk explained how furloughs are often misunderstood in his Ministry 127 blog post from 2014,
“Even though it is good to separate for a time, furlough is not vacation. I remember my wife Virginia sharing a conversation that she had with a pastor’s wife during our first furlough. The pastor’s wife said to her, “I wish my husband got a year of vacation after every four years.” Most of the time, a furlough schedule bears little resemblance to a vacation since missionaries must travel from city to city visiting potential supporting churches or participating in mission conferences.”
Dr. Don Sisk
Often, those who return home on furlough, need someone to help them secure housing for themselves and their family for the length of their stay. As you can imagine, this can be a difficult task when you’re not even in the same country where you will need to find a home. This is where the support of their loved ones and community can be extremely helpful. You can check out potential rentals on their behalf or you can go through your own list of contacts to see if anyone has room to spare.
Perhaps you, yourself, have a guest house or spare room and can offer to host?
Stay in Contact With Loved Ones Serving On A Medical Mission Trip
Being a missionary can be rewarding work in many ways, and yet it can also be lonely and exhausting. Hearing from loved ones back home can be a great way to feel supported while in the mission field. Just knowing that your community is remembering to include you, in some way, in their lives is a great encouragement.
This can include letters, video chats, care packages, and more. Even picking up the phone to send a quick, “thinking of you” text is sure to bring a smile to the face of your beloved missionary.
Hear Directly From Those Who Serve
Youth With A Mission (YWAM) created their own video back in April 2020 to discuss what ways of receiving support from their communities have been most meaningful for them. Take a look now in their video, “How To Support A Missionary Without Money”
Did you learn something new about how to support the missionaries in your life? Leave us a note in the comments and let us know!
We owe a debt of gratitude to all those people who came before us in the Missions field. Their hard work has helped to set the stage that allows Mission Partners For Christ to do the work that we do. They helped to establish best practices and showed us how to properly forge healthy relationships in the communities where we do our work. Let’s take a few minutes to learn about a few of the women who came before us.
Mary Slessor, Nigeria
Mary Mitchell Slessor was born in 1848 in Aberdeen, Scotland, and grew up in the slums of Dundee. Mary was the daughter of a shoemaker. Her mother was deeply religious and made sure that Mary attended church each Sunday. Mary finished her schooling at the age of 14 when she went to work full-time at the jute mills to help support her family.
When Mary was 28, she decided to pursue her growing interest in missions. She applied to the United Presbyterian’s Foreign Mission Board in 1876 to work with them as a missionary. After a short training period in Edinburgh, Mary boarded a ship with her cousin, Robert Mitchell Beedie – who served as a missionary in Buchan – and arrived in Calabar, Nigeria in September of 1876.
Mary took the time to become fully immersed in the culture and language of her new home, which created trust and lasting relationships with the people of Calabar. She became fluent in Efik, the language of the local people. Unlike other missionaries in her time, Mary chose to live among the people to whom she ministered.
Mary Slessor was instrumental in ending smallpox in the region when she began a vaccination campaign amongst the local people groups in the early 1900s. She is also credited with ending the infanticide of twins, whom the Calabar people believed to be cursed and would often abandon to starve to death or to be eaten by wild animals. Mary partnered with a local mission to save as many of those babies as possible and ultimately chose to adopt many of them herself.
After multiple bouts of Malaria, Mary developed a severe fever in January 1915 and passed away. She was honored with a state funeral. Mary is remembered today in Nigeria as the “mother of all the peoples.”
Born Rhoda Grey in Newcastle to Reverend Maurice Grey and his wife Elsie, she would grow up attending church with her family and become known as Wendy.
As a young girl growing up in a small town in England, Wendy was constantly reading books filled with tales of missionary adventures. Women like Mary Slessor and Gladys Aylward were her role models for what a young woman could accomplish. Rogerson would eventually train as a nurse, never fully suspecting that she would follow in the footsteps of the women she had admired in her childhood.
In 1948, Wendy trained as a nurse and began a career as a midwife in the Newcastle suburb known as Jesmond.
A combination of events, such as a news article she happened to read and a talk she attended, affirmed her call to the missions field. Wendy’s path was set upon learning about Borneo’s dire need for medical missionaries. She knew that Jesus was calling her to love and care for the people of Borneo. Wendy stepped foot on that island in 1959. She served as a teacher and a nurse with a mission already established in the region. Wendy was the only trained medical practitioner for hundreds of miles, and her days quickly filled with patients desperate for medical treatment.
Three years after her arrival in Borneo, Wendy took a furlough and returned to England. It was then that she met Colin Rogerson, whom she would marry. Wendy remained in England to raise her family, yet she never forgot Borneo. She returned twice in later years: once in 1985 and once in 2003.
In 2018, she published a book detailing her experiences. The book is called “The Midwife of Borneo.”
Glady Aylward was born in London, England to working-class parents, Thomas John Aylward and Rosina Florence. Gladys tried hard in school but found the work challenging. She left school to start working at age 14, eventually landing in a role as a housemaid. Four years later, through the influence of her local friends, Gladys became an Evangelical Christian.
In her late 20s, Gladys chanced upon a newspaper article that discussed the spiritual state of China. Hearing that millions of Chinese people had never heard the gospel, Gladys felt a calling to go to China as a missionary.
Gladys began training for missionary work at the China Inland Mission in London. She lasted three months before being informed by the mission’s leadership that they would not be recommending her for service due to her struggles with learning the language. Undeterred, Gladys decided that she would find her own way to China.
Having heard about an older woman, Jeannie Lawson– who served as a missionary in China and who needed a young person to assist her in her work– Gladys spent her life savings on travel fare to get to China. One October day in the early 1930s, Gladys bid her life in England farewell and began what would be a long and difficult journey to Yangcheng, China.
Gladys’s travels took her from her Liverpool station to Japan, narrowly avoiding forced labor in Russia along the way. She finally reached her destination after traveling by foot, bus, and mule and met the woman with whom she would be working. Together, they set to work to create what would be called “The Inn of the Eight Happinesses,” the name references the eight virtues: Love, Virtue, Gentleness, Tolerance, Loyalty, Truth, Beauty, and Devotion.
The Inn became a central point of their ministry. They would offer safe space to travelers and share stories with them about Jesus. A year after Gladys arrived in China, Jeannie Lawson fell and was fatally injured, leaving Gladys to run the ministry herself.
In time, Gladys began working with the government as a foot inspector. The Chinese government had passed a new law forbidding the binding of feet, a common practice in which young girls would have their feet bound to keep them small, believing that large feet were unattractive. In an era where many foot inspectors were faced with violence, Gladys’s efforts to end this cruel practice were met with success.
During her time in China, she adopted five children as her own and became the unofficial mother to hundreds more.
She eventually left China for Great Britain in 1949 when the Communist army was actively seeking out missionaries. But her heart never left China. She attempted to return after her mother’s death, but the Chinese government rejected her visa application. Instead of returning to China, Gladys moved to Taiwan in 1958 and opened the Gladys Aylward Orphanage.
It would seem that Dr. Scudder’s life path was forged for her generations before she was even born. Her grandfather, Rev. Dr. John Scudder Sr., and father, Dr. John Scudder, both served as medical missionaries. Coming from a long line of missionaries instilled Ida with a strong sense of what it means to foster a servant’s heart. She frequently witnessed illness and poverty throughout her young life.
Education was an important thing in Ida’s family. She attended seminary in Massachusetts, returning to India upon graduation to assist her father with his work. In 1894, she received a call into medical missions when three different pregnant women knocked on her door one night seeking medical assistance. Each of these women died in childbirth as they had no access to the kind of medical intervention they needed. Due to their beliefs, none of these women could be treated by men, and Ida did not have the training to help them (nor were female OB-GYNs accessible to women in that region). She had previously been adamant that she would not become a medical missionary. Still, having witnessed these terrible tragedies, she could not deny that she was called and needed to go to medical school.
Ida Scudder applied to Cornell Medical School and graduated at the top of her class – the first, of which, that accepted women. Before her return to India, a Manhattan banker known only as “Mr. Schell” decided to sponsor Ida’s ministry with a $10,000 grant in his wife’s name. Mr. Schell also ensured that Ida had all the medical instruments needed for her work in India.
Ida returned to India on January 1, 1900, and set to work immediately. Her father gave her a room for her small practice, but her needs quickly outgrew the space. By 1906, she was working with as many as 40,000 patients annually. In 1909, she opened the Mary Taber Shell Hospital.
In 1918, this doctor, who once could not envision herself working in the medical field, decided to open a medical school to train women as doctors and nurses. Expecting little interest, Ida was delightfully surprised to receive 151 applicants in her first year. She had to turn most of these applicants away, not having the resources to train so many people.
In 1928, she opened The Vellore Christian Medical Center, a larger hospital than her first. As of 2003, Vellore Christian Medical Center was the largest Christian hospital in the world.
Dr. Ida Scudder passed away in May of 1960 in her bungalow in Kodaikanal, India.
Amy Beatrice Carmichael, the daughter of a well-to-do flour mill owner, was born in Millisle, County Down, Ireland in 1867. She lived in an English boarding school during part of her childhood. The first few years of her life were spent in comfort, but that changed when Amy was still a young girl. Her father’s flour mill began to lose money and had to be shut down. Amy would have to leave school to help support and care for her large family.
When Amy was 16, she moved with her family to Belfast. There, Amy first felt a stirring in her soul to work with those living in poverty. She befriended a group of people known as the “shawlies”; they were so poor that they could not afford hats to protect themselves from the cold, so they covered their heads with shawls instead. Through her efforts in building relationships within the shawlie community and advocating on their behalf, she was able to build a church for them.
In 1887, Amy heard Hudson Taylor, founder of the Chinese Inland Mission, speak on missions in Asia. Then, Amy first heard her call to go overseas and preach the gospel. She applied for training and lived in London for a brief time to prepare for life as a missionary. Her health, however, prevented her from working with the Chinese Inland Mission.
She later pursued work with the Christian Missionary Society. Initially serving in Japan, Amy returned home due to poor health. However, Amy was convinced that God had called her to the mission field. She wasn’t deterred from her goals. She took the time she needed to rest and returned to work. Amy first went to Sri Lanka and finally received an assignment to the place she would call home for the next 55 years: India.
Commissioned by the Church of England’s Zenana Missionary Society, Amy found that her focus was primarily needed in ministering to women and young girls. A significant problem in India, at that time, was temple prostitution. Girls were often sold to Hindu temples by families who didn’t want daughters or needed the money; these girls were often forced into sex work to earn money for the temple priests.
In order to rescue and care for these young girls, Amy founded an orphanage in Dohnavur, where she became known as “amma” (Tamil for “mother”) and cared for hundreds of girls throughout her time in India.
In 1931, Amy suffered a nasty fall that left her bedridden, but she could not give up her work. When she couldn’t physically serve, she wrote. In her lifetime, Amy wrote close to 40 books to let the world know what God was doing through missions.
Amy Carmichael died in 1951 at the age of 83. Her body rests in Dohnavur, where she spent most of her life. Following her wishes, there is no tombstone above her grave. Instead, a birdbath has been installed and engraved with just one word: Amma.
Are you a medical professional? Have you ever thought about joining us for a medical missions trip, but quickly dismissed the idea because of your work commitments? This is a common frustration for many good-hearted folks who, just like you, have the heart to help but lack the availability. If this resonates, this may be the article that you need to read.
While you might assume that you would have to claim vacation days or miss out on pay to join us, it is quite possible that your employer is supportive and has a policy in place to support the work that you are doing. It is quite possible that you can take paid time off to join us in this ministry!
If you have professional medical expertise, there is a place for you on one of our missions trips.
Why Volunteer Your Time With Medical Missions?
When you choose to volunteer your time and expertise on a medical missions trip, you’ll be gaining new experiences, meeting new people, and so much more; most importantly, you will be literally changing lives for the better.
The people that you will meet on these trips will also change your life in ways that you cannot imagine. When you look into the eyes of another person whose well-being depends on you, that is a life-altering experience. You will encounter the image of God in every soul that we treat and share the gospel with.
We cannot do this life-saving work without people like you. We hope that you will consider joining us for an upcoming trip.
Who Will You Be Treating
The areas that Mission Partners For Christ visits are in desperate need of people with your expertise. We encounter men, women, and children who, often, do not have access to the kind of basic healthcare that you and I take for granted each day.
Too many lives are lost or shortened due to preventable causes. It is our passion to bring healthcare and healthcare education to them so that they can go on to live the full and thriving lives they deserve to have. Medical missions can help.
Where Are We Going?
We currently have two medical missions trips open for applications:
We will be in Ethiopia October 1-10, 2022. There, we will be working among the Oromo people and supporting our missions partners, Campus Crusade for Christ, Great Commission Ministry, and Global Hope Network International. We will be sharing the gospel and helping to assess patients and provide treatment as necessary. We will even find a little extra time to visit Nech Sar National Park where you will be able to witness the awe and wonder of God’s creation as zebras, cheetahs, lions, and more wander through the great Nech Sar Plains.
We will be in Guinea February 4-23, 2023 working with our ministry partner, Community Church Ministries, Inc. We will be doing a number of things in service to the people in Guinea such as providing necessary health assessments and treatment. We will also be providing health education. Other areas we will be focusing on will include: clean water wells, evangelism, and sustainability projects such as farming.
I Am Interested: What’s My Next Step?
Before you do anything, you should check with your employer to find out what their policy is on a medical missions trip. If they support these trips, you will not have to worry about taking vacation days and might even be able to take that time off with pay.
If you need documentation to prove that you are volunteering with us as a medical professional, you can reach out to us so that we can see what we can do to help.
I Am Not A Medical Professional: Can I Still Volunteer?
Absolutely! We need people from all walks of life to help us with this life-changing and soul-saving work. You do not need a medical degree to serve with us.
We need people to help us dig, build, pray, and so much more. There is plenty of work to do outside of medical necessities, and all are welcome to volunteer with us.
I Can’t Come On A Trip Right Now But Still Want To Be Involved
That’s great! We want you to be involved too. There are still a few ways that you can support Mission Partners For Christ without traveling with us.
We need donations. We have a number of goals we’d like to reach in order to bless the people that we have been serving. Things like vehicles,clean water wells, and more.
We also accept generic donations to help cover the rest of our costs in running this organization and meeting the needs of those we serve.
We need prayer warriors. Never underestimate the power of prayers. Our successes can only happen because we have people like you holding us and our partners in prayer.
Spread the word. Make sure your friends and family members are aware that they, too, can serve with us. Whether it’s through donations, prayer, or coming with us on a trip let them know that there are opportunities for them in our ministry. You can share this blog post, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest and pass along any post that resonates.
Don’t miss the chance to do God’s work with us. Get in touch with any questions you might have, and don’t forget to check with your employer about any policy that will support your volunteer choices.
“And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” –Philippians 4:19
When you are on the mission field, you will see a lot of people who have less than what you have when it comes to personal belongings. You may even see a lot of poverty depending on the location you are serving. It is easy to see these things and start to believe that the Lord isn’t providing for these people.
You may feel sadness or even guilt if you compare your “blessings” to theirs. But a perspective shift has to happen. First of all, blessings come in more forms than “stuff.” Secondly, You have to believe that if YOU care about the suffering, pain, or needs that you see around you, then God absolutely cares as well!
Take this story about Elijah for example:
“Now Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, ‘As the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word.’ Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah: ‘Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. You will drink from the brook, and I have ordered the ravens to feed you there.’ So he did what the Lord had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there. The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.” –1 Kings 17:1-7
The Lord took care of His child Elijah. But He didn’t just hand Elijah food and drink in the way we think God would do it. He had him drink out of a brook and be fed by scraps from the birds. God cares for His children in peculiar ways to bring glory to Him through the process!
So how does that story relate to what you may see on missions trips? It shows that God cares about all of His children and provides for their needs in ways that bring Him glory. And sometimes the way He takes care of others is through you and me! It may be peculiar for God to care for those in one country through the work of those from another, but He makes a way! One example is that God sends teams of people like groups from Mission Partners for Christ and our local mission partners to care for the physical needs of those in Ethiopia, Liberia, or other locations. I bet people in those countries would have never imagined God caring for them in that peculiar way!
“Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.” –Matthew 6:31-32
Though the Lord provides for our physical needs, the biggest need He promises to provide for is our need of grace. It’s a free gift we can receive and share with others at all times! Just like Elijah had to remind himself during times where he felt alone and hungry, “The ravens are coming!” we get to tell ourselves in times of hopelessness, “Jesus is coming!”