The following was written and compiled by members of the Missions Mobilization Team of the Baptist General Convention of Texas. This guide is designed to be used on a mission trip to prepare your group for what you can do when you get back to your community. For more information about this material or about how to get involved in mission work, please contact Ryan Jespersen by phone at (214) 828-5278 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here to download this post as a PDF document.
What an incredible joy it has been to serve the Lord together this week. You have been a part of a wonderful journey serving, witnessing to and loving on people on this mission field. We pray this week has been life-changing for you. Now, we would like to explore how you can be on mission in your own community and take what you have been doing this week home to where you live. Acts 1:8 describes the place of our mission efforts - Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the Ends of the Earth. This simply means that mission work is done everywhere and with all people, both those we are comfortable with and those we are not. Coming to this place and engaging in this kind of work is just one type of missions. Maybe coming on this trip has been the equivalent of you going to your Judea, or your Samaria, or to the Ends of the earth. Whatever it has been for you, just because the trip is over does not mean your mission work is complete. It is now time for you to continue the mission work in your hometown.
Let's start with a few questions just about Texas…
- Out of a population of around 26 million how many people in Texas do you think go to church on a regular basis?
A) About a 1/5th
B) All of them
C) Half of them
D) Most of them
- What is the most ethnically diverse city in the United States?
A) New York, NY
B) Chicago, IL
C) Dallas TX
D) Houston TX
- How many children do you believe in the state of Texas do not have access to regular meals at home?
- What is the percentage of Texans who believe in nothing, not Christianity or any other Concept of Faith?
When we look at these questions one of the things that we have to realize is that all of them point us to the reality that Texas itself is a mission field. The community where your church sits is a mission field and you have the opportunity to draw men and women into a saving relationship with God in that field, your mission field.
Let's take a few minutes now and talk about how we can take the mission trip experience and apply it in our everyday lives.
Questions for the beginning of the trip
- What is missions? What does it mean to you to do mission work?
- Have you ever been on a mission trip before?
- Why did you come on this trip? Beyond wanting to serve, what appealed to you about this trip? Why not go on a different trip?
- What was it like for you as you prepared for this trip? Was it easy to prepare; were you excited? Was it hard to prepare; were you nervous. Explain.
- Did you have to sacrifice anything to come on this trip? (ex: finances, vacation time, missing an important event, time away from family) Was that sacrifice easy or hard? Please be open and honest.
- What are your expectations for this trip? (share good and bad expectations)
- What are you most looking forward to and what are you most nervous about?
Questions for the end of the mission trip to encourage people to carry the mission mindset back into regular life
- What was your favorite moment/memory from the week?
- Think back to what you were most excited and most nervous about. Did those things come up during the trip? If so, were they as good or bad as you thought they would be?
- Where did you see God work during this experience we have had together?
- What kind of experiences should we do back home to see God work in the same way?
- What kind of needs did you see on this trip?
- When you consider the needs in your community, how are they similar to what you are seeing here?
- How could you impact the community you are in, and where you are at?
A few suggestions to impact your community
- Mentoring a child at a local elementary school.
- Beginning a Meals On Wheels program out of your church.
- Beginning a Simple Church or Bible study at a local apartment complex, RV Park, city park or other place.
- Beginning an afterschool program for kids from a local school in your community.
- Doing a block party in a local park to invite people to church
- Doing a trash pick -up day in your local community.
Answer Key: 1) A 2) D 3) B 4) D