Send Me! Missions Overseas or At Home?
Searching for a way to travel, experience the world, and witness the beauty of other cultures? If making the world a better place is also high on your list, then going on a short-term mission trip or accepting a long-term assignment overseas may be something to consider.
“As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.” John 17:18
A mission abroad comes with great commitment and sometimes sacrifices.
I was attending the Chapel Service at Northwestern Bible College in Minneapolis, MN, a college started by Billy Graham. It was about 10:00 a.m. on January 8, 1966, when the students were told that five missionaries had been massacred on a beach in Ecuador by Auca Indians in that region. The student body was devastated.
However, God brought salvation through the tragedy. He worked in that village and many of the tribe came to Jesus in later years through a Wycliffe missionary. The tribe even changed their name from Auca, meaning ‘savage,’ to Awaonie, which means ‘the people.’
One of the missionaries killed was a pilot named Nate Saint. He wrote the song, “So send I you.” The lyrics include the phrases “Bring the lost to me,” “My victory is in Him,” and “To set captives free.” To him, reaching sinners was all the victory he needed, whatever the cost.
Great. So who wants to do missions overseas?
Anti-Christian thinking and persecution are widespread around the world. Society is more high-tech, but it’s less relational which gives Satan a stronghold in our self-focused world.
Any overseas assignment will surely be a different culture then what you are used to. Living together with members of different racial, denominational, and economic backgrounds is an adjustment for anyone. It will be a growing experience. But the important thing to remember is it’s not so much about your experience, skills, and works but all about your “being” in Christ.
“God doesn’t call the qualified; he qualifies the called.”
Reaching the World from Home
A world population paradigm shift seems to be taking place and changing America. The global society has become one world through commerce, travel, the internet and the influx of nationals from other countries flooding into America. We now need domestic cross-cultural missionaries working in ethnic clusters within the U.S. as well as overseas.
With today’s technology, we can even work from our homes, full-time or part-time, and make a real contribution in winning the world for Jesus. More and more people are working out of their homes with world-wide results in business, mentoring and evangelism.
“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.” Hebrews 13:8
The Word of God is indeed still alive and speaks to us. Through it, He speaks to me not only about my own situation but also about those around the world who are in bondage apart from Jesus. He is speaking so very clearly and prominently today. Reaching the world is by far the most important thing for all of us. Truly the night is far spent and the day is at hand (Romans13:12).
Overseas or at home?
When author and speaker John Piper was asked this question, he responded, “I believe home mission ministry is a great way to prepare for overseas service.”
Missions is a way for Jesus to live out His desire in us to help fulfill the Great Commission. Keep on keeping on, wherever God leads you to serve.
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Mike Gallagher has spent thirty years with Wycliffe Bible Translators and also works with MissionNext aas a Member Care Coordinator.