Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Reason NOT to Go on Mission Trips

As you know, if you read my last 2 blog posts, I just went to the Bill Glass Weekend of Champions in Huntsville, TX, last weekend. Last night at church I saw one of my friends from the trip. We chatted only very briefly but she told me she had a conversation with the lady who planned our trip (and then got sick and could not go) about what to do now. Bascially she said something like this, "I can't go down there (to the jail in Houston) and spend 2 days then leave and say, 'see you next year.'" And then she said, "See, this is why I don't go on mission trips." She was kidding (I think) but completely got to the heart of the purpose of mission trips. Oh yeah, of course the purpose of mission trips is to share the Gospel with those that desperately need to hear as well as show the love of God in visible, tangible ways. That's the impact mission trip participants have on those they go to. But, the dual purpose is what God does in the lives and hearts of the mission trip participants. When you go and come back, you come back changed.

I remember when I went on my first overseas mission trip. Even though I have travelled some for tours and vacations, it was nothing like going and sharing life with believers in a South American country. Eating what they eat. Worshipping like they worship, even if I didn't understand the language. Hearing their struggles and their joys. Hearing how God is calling them to fulfill His mission and seeing that in action. I was hooked. Me, the biggest homebody ever, was hooked. One of the greatest thrills of my life is to take people places they have never been to do things they've never done. Maybe they even wondered if they were capable. I am so glad we don't go in our own strength or talent.

So, here's the deal, do NOT go on a misison trip if you don't want your life to be forever changed. If you are content with living your life seeing the world from your comfortable perspective, don't go. If you don't want to know what's actually going on in the world, don't go. If you don't want to have the joy of telling someone about Jesus who has never even heard His name, don't go. If you don't want to be stretched out of your comfort zone or ability, don't go. If you don't want to come home and wonder what you can do to make an impact not only on unreached and hurting people around the world but also in your own city and neighborhood, don't go. If you think Christ's command to go and tell was not meant for you then, by all means, don't go.

However, if you take Jesus at His Word, then go. If you are willing to risk what He might do in you and through you, then go. If you are willing to take a step of faith and even take the risk of being forever changed, then please, I beg you, go.

I know it's asking a lot. I know it's a lot of money. I know it might mean taking vacation time from work or leaving your children. I know it might be hard and the food might be awful and you won't know the language. I know it might even seem dangerous. I know and I get it. Would you at least pray about it? No, no, I mean REALLY pray about it? Would you seek God's Word about it? If yes, then let me know how I can pray with you and for you. Let me know how I can help.

If God's not calling you to go, then don't go. Just find out for sure if He is or not. That's all.

Serving the King,



Lauren said...

Love this post! So true! Thanks for the challenge!

Anonymous said...

What is the cost of Peru trip #2? Isn't that the one Hailey is planning to go on? She asked me to go, now this post; I really have to pray about it. Money is the biggest problem right now; 3 in college this year, and 2 still next year!
You can email me the details if you like.