Missions Misunderstood » Missions

Posted March 5th, 2010 by E. Goodman

Most churches actually require unbelievers to be the missionaries. In order for them understand the gospel and its effect on their lives, they have to enter our church culture and extrapolate for themselves what a relationships with Jesus would mean for them. They have to learn a new language in order to hear the gospel. […]

Filed under:Incarnation, Missiology, Missions Posted January 4th, 2010 by E. Goodman

The biggest obstacle to a church truly becoming missional is a mistaken sense of citizenship. Missionaries to foreign lands understand quite well (and quickly!) that ministry among a different people requires them to change the way they see things- they learn language in order to communicate, they study culture in order to relate, they build […]

Filed under:Church, Definitions, Missions Posted December 18th, 2009 by E. Goodman

Believers often look to the life and ministry of the Apostle Paul as the model for missions. He did, after all, travel around telling people about Jesus and leave a trail of networked churches in his wake. But Paul isn’t the best picture of a missionary. Paul didn’t seem to0 concerned with contextualization- mostly because […]

Filed under:Christianity, Incarnation, Missions Posted December 11th, 2009 by E. Goodman

Dear Pastor, I’ve always been perplexed by your lack of direct involvement in international missions. It’s not that you shy away from preaching about international issues. You often encourage social action- you’ve led your church’s campaign to help local public schools. You support a child in a poverty-stricken village in Malaysia. You’ve raised money to […]

Filed under:Church, Missions, Social Action, Uncategorized Posted November 10th, 2009 by E. Goodman

Most of the time, when people make decisions, they’re not really choosing from among all the options. Call the filters, call them limitations; but things like popularity, availability, accessibility, cost, visibility, availability, and ignorance all come into play- narrowing the field of choices to (usually) just a few. Many of us who would like to […]

Tags: Alternatives

Filed under:Definitions, Missiology, Missions, Trends Posted July 27th, 2009 by E. Goodman

Tradecraft is the set of skills one acquires though experience in a particular trade. Seasoned businessmen know how to properly vet new leadership. Exceptional communicators are aware of their tone, gestures, volume, and cadence because they know that delivery is as important as content. Good authors don’t forget pay attention to the details that make […]

Filed under:Missions, Strategy Posted July 23rd, 2009 by E. Goodman

Missionaries sometimes have a difficult time getting the attention of the busy (and distracted) churches that send them. It’s really hard to compete with the flashy ad campaigns of nonprofits that have contractually-obligated celebrity endorsements and seemingly limitless resources. Costly partnerships in intangible work with unreliable results can be a hard sell. Sometimes, ministry just […]

Posted July 13th, 2009 by E. Goodman

You’ve worked hard to build a missions-minded church. You have a couple that are really excited about ministry in Indonesia. You have a young lady who’s been to Kenya over a dozen times. Your church has planted churches in inner-city Detroit and suburban Ohio. You take mission trips to Nicaragua and Lisbon every year. You […]

Filed under:Church, Missions Posted June 17th, 2009 by E. Goodman

Most negative missions experiences are due to unrealistic expectations. (This, of course, is a wildly unsubstantiated claim based on my limited experience and no formal research whatsoever.) It usually goes something like this: “Yay, we’re going to be missionaries! We love the nations! God’s glory! Passion! Finish the task” Then, “It’s okay to be uncomfortable. […]

Posted June 15th, 2009 by E. Goodman

Dirty, sick orphans living in garbage dumps in South America. Malnourished children in desolate African villages. Underground house churches in outer Chinese provinces. Sex slaves lining the street in a Thailand slum. A burgeoning pub church in Western Europe. What do these scenes have in common? Streams of Christians on mission trips. In an effort […]

Tags: ethics, Humanitarian trips, observation