A few days ago I laid down some of the realities of money when it comes to funding both long term and short term missions. I recieved an enormoous amounts of encouragment from my fellow long term missionaries ( solidarty to you my friends)
On the other hand I received alot of pushback and even some from suprising places with some suprising hurtful things. I don’t answer to personal attacks. You have a problem with me lets chat about it but to try and cover it in sugar sweet words about my heart. nope, I am a straight shooter… I am not perfect but I know the difference between disagreeing and personally trying to cut me down. so with that out of the way.
I wanted to follow up on my first post.. you can find it on my instagram from a few days ago.
Short term missions ( this might turn into two posts) I’ve truly never met a short term missionary with bad intentions. Usually they are sweeter then pie and have all the passion in the world to serve Jesus. but sometimes unknowingly trips that are intended to serve end up doing more damage than if they hadn’t showed up to serve.
So what are ways we can reform the way short term missions are run.
( these are all my opinoin and some opinoions )
- International short term missions should not take away jobs or employment from locals. Spending $4000 to come over and paint a school when that same job could have provided 2 men income for a month should be avoided at all costs.
- Those with specific skills sets should come for teaching rather than always doing. I would love to watch those with skill sets unfound overseas to come instead of providing temporary services to train local professionals. Then those services can be used more than 2 weeks out of the year.
- International teams should not require long term missionaries to have to over extend themselves in order to perfect the schedule of those coming to visit and serve.
- Teams should be focused on caring and serving long term partners and missionaries on the ground. For example: For me to host a team would have to arrange all the details while also managing my daily ministry and family. Which would be great if I knew for a few days people were coming to serve my heart through worship, having conversations, babysitting, doing my laundry, picking up my groceries cooking etc. All things that would help me recharge and give me a fresh prespective.
- Teams coming to learn. I think one of the most valuable aspects of missions is being willing to listen and learn. I think to often short term missions have created a culuture of measure where we feel the need to compare. Comparing on instagram blogs etc that create a list of the requirements for a succesful mission. How many babies did you hold? how many people came to christ through your testimony.. etc. what if we focused less on numbers and comparing and more on caring for the hearts of people we are serving.
- I would say one of the main goals of hosting short term missionaries is to create ambassadors for your mission overseas. Meaning if you come and serve we pray God will lay on your heart to advocate financial and prayfully with others to help support our ministry. If teams focused on coming observing, learning, and praying over ministry I can only imagine the passion that would be lit inside those to go home and share as well as educate those about some of the issues faced by vulnerable communities.
I’ve stated previously I am not opposed to short term missions nor do I think God ony uses those with long commitments. I do think there needs to be better conversations regarding saftey, effectivenss and sustainability .
So thoughts? I’d love to keep the discussion going !
Comment or email me firstname.lastname@example.org