“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all of Judea and in Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” – Acts 1:8
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold I am with you always, to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:19-2
I love international missions and love to lead teams on short-term international mission trips! In my opinion, every Christian should go on at least one short-term international mission trip. There are several reasons why I believe this.
In the verses above Jesus is speaking with his disciples and even commanding them “to go and make disciples of all nations.” A disciple is simply a follower of Christ. I am a follower of Christ and so is everyone else who has accepted Christ as their Savior. This command was not only issued to His (Christ’s) disciples who were with Him during His ministry on earth, but this command was issued to me as well as you, if you are a follower of Christ! He also tells us “to be His witnesses to the ends of the earth.” The ends of the earth for me as an Executive Pastor over Missions at Journey Church, are the countries of Honduras, Uganda, and Venezuela. God has commanded me to take groups from Journey to these countries to make disciples!
The second reason that I believe that every Christian should go on a short-term international mission is that the trip will be life-changing for you! Many of the individuals who travel with me the first time, feel that they are going to help the people who live in another country. Their minds change once they are engaged in the trip and with the people of the country – they realize that the people of the country blessed them more than they blessed the people. It also opens their eyes to the fact that Americans are “rich”. We are all rich in comparison to people who live in third world countries.
The last reason that I believe that every Christian should go on a short-term mission trip is found in Matthew 22:39. “And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” One of my favorite things to do on a mission trip is to love on the people inside of the country. Jesus told us to love our neighbor as yourself. Everyone is our neighbor! Although we may not be able to speak the same language, showing God’s love to our neighbors allows us to communicate with them. Before every mission trip, I always tell the team members that I expect only three things of them. They are:
1. Love the people
2. Love the people
3. Love the people
So come and go with us on our next trip!