February 4th 2013 No comments yet
Do you think God is calling you to a career as a missionary? That’s great! Here are a few steps to get you started.
1. Stay out of debt.
Few things limit our flexibility to be used by God wherever He pleases like debt. Cutting up your credit cards and paying off your bills is easier than you think, and it really opens up your options for cross-cultural ministry. Debt will not eliminate you from becoming a missionary, but it has an uncanny way of slowing down your progress toward the mission field. Avoid it.
Â 2. Work on your theology.
You will need a firm foundation in the Bible and a well-developed theology in order to deal with the complex challenges involved in going and making disciples of all the nations. Your theology will keep you in the field for the long haul and prevent you from straying into superfluous pursuits. Many mission agencies require some formal theological education. Take the initiative to get ready by learning the Scriptures and training yourself to think rightly about God.
3. Begin to pray and ask others to pray.
Obviously you want to ask God to guide you as you begin to understand His calling on your life, but you should also invite others to pray for you. Missionaries are not loners. They have an impressive network of godly men women who care for and intercede for them. Seek out prayer partners who are not only passionate about seeing people turn to Christ, but are also wise and willing to correct you from error. Furthermore, pray for the nations and inform your prayers by learning more about the world around you. For a daily guide to praying for the world, check out Operation World, Seventh Edition by Jason Mandryk (Colorado Springs: Biblica, 2010).
4. Develop an evangelistic lifestyle.
The heart and soul of a missionary’s ministry is evangelism. Leading people to faith in Jesus drives everything he or she does. You must be able to give a clear presentation of the gospel, and you must want to do so. You will not magically turn into someone who is driven to tell others about Christ the minute your feet step off of the airplane and onto foreign soil. If you don’t share your faith here, you probably won’t share your faith there. Why wait? Learn how to share your faith and seek opportunities to tell others about Jesus right here at home.
5. Experience a short-term cross-cultural mission.
This step is optional, but it is a good idea. Not only will you get to experience ministry in another culture, you are also likely to start friendships with other missionaries. They can encourage you in your calling and answer practical questions. Stonebriar Community Church offers several excellent short-term mission opportunities each year. Check with the Missions department for more information.
May God bless you richly as you pursue His will for you.
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