Mock Missions Moment #1 – An Interactive Scenario. What would you do?

beggar-extends-his-hand-for-moneyFlash forward past all of the prerequisites of getting to go on a short-term missions trip…

“Hi, my name is Richard, mind if I ask you a question?” (Through a translator)

“Sure! Go right ahead.”

“Have you heard of Jesus?”

“Yea, a bit.”

“What’s your name?”

“Manuel.”

(Richard) “Ok, Manuel… Do you know that Jesus loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life?”

(Manuel) “He does?”

(Richard) “Yes!”

(Manuel) “Can I ask you a question?”

(Richard) “Certainly!”

(Manuel) “You’re A Christian, right?”

(Richard) “Yes, I am.”

(Manuel) “And you believe what that Bible of yours says is truth, right?”

(Richard) “Of course!”

(Manuel) “So, when the Bible says, ‘Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.’ Matthew 5:42 , you believe that to be true, right?”

(Richard) “Well… yeah, sure.”

(Manuel) “So, if I were to ask you for….”

(Richard) “Wait!… I know where you’re going with this, but like Peter the Apostle once said, “money I do not have, but what I have I give you.” Like Peter, I’m here to give you the Gospel, not money.”

(Manuel) “Oh, so you’re saying that those nice shoes, backpack, clothes, and hat were all given to you? You didn’t buy them?”

(Richard) “No, I’m not saying that… I did buy them.”

(Manuel) “So you do have money?”

(Richard) “Well, sure… but not a lot.”

(Manuel)  “So, you didn’t come here prepared to do what Jesus tells you to do?” 

(Richard) “No, I didn’t say that.”

(Manuel) “But you’ve got “enough” to stay at that nice hotel/restaurant where I’m a dish washer… Where I see the meals you eat and all of the very costly things you have…. and, you did fly an airplane to get here, right?

(Richard) “yes… I suppose all of that is true.”

(Manuel) “So, again, since it is within your power to do so, and since you’re a Christian, and since the bible says not to turn away anyone who wants to borrow from you, and since you’re preaching Jesus so that I can know Him too, can I borrow 100 dollars?”

*** End of Scenario***

What would you say or do next with Manuel?

0 thoughts on “Mock Missions Moment #1 – An Interactive Scenario. What would you do?

  1. Claudia Labrador says:

    “OUCH!”

  2. Rick Knock says:

    Give him $100 – not as a loan, but as a gift – and ask him if he would be willing to come and share his thoughts with the rest of the missions team.

  3. David Kueker says:

    I’m with Rick – give him $100 and be thankful he didn’t ask for $1000 or more.

    Short term mission trips do make disciples – of the gringos who go on them. Most travelers do return home as better Christians.

    I’m not so sure they do as much long term good for the people of the cultures they visit.

  4. Jonathan says:

    The fun thing about this example is that I’m not on a short term mission trip so I can say, “sure, I’d give him the $100, my backpack, my North face jacket and some of the other travel equipment that I’m carrying that cost more than this fellow probably earns in 6 months.”

    Here’s the analogous situation/question that may confront me in a few hours on this Lord’s Day that may say more about how I’d actually answer your question while on a short term mission trip through a developing country:

    When I enter a church building today or during that portion of the congregational service where we spend 5 minutes in an exercise of orchestrated fellowship kicked off by a worship leader saying something like, “While the musicians play, let’s take a few moments to greet one another in the name of Christ”. When an inconvenient attender seeks me out from the warmth of the pew that I’ve staked out for the past 15 years and begins to answer the question, “Hey brother, how are you this fine morning?!” with a sad or angry face and begins to tell me how much he is hurting because he had lost his job, his spouse, his dog, or other inconvenient event, what is my first thought? If it is something like, “Goodness! Doesn’t this dude know that this time is for meaningless smiles, handshakes, and backslapping? I don’t have time for this right now and besides, there’s an important game on in 2 hours that may determine e if I win my fantasy football league. Not only that but would it have killed you to brush your teeth once in awhile?”

    Put another way, if I’m not practicing compassion on a daily basis at home, I’m not likely to play well on gameday.

    • David Woods says:

      What makes me so mad sometimes Jonathan, is that they aren’t even being genuine about trying to get people to mingle and meet one another for five minutes, they are really just giving the band time to take down. The whole program from start to finish is usually just scripted for the cause of the program itself, not the needs of the people or the Lord. That’s what turns me off.

  5. Tim Day says:

    I face this with homeless people with whom I interact. I have relationships with most of them and I have a good idea of where the money will go.

    When they ask, I’m often unprepared to answer immediately. I’ll ask the Holy Spirit and sometimes I get an answer.

    Sometimes I give them some of what I have. Sometimes I take them over to Home Depot and buy a refill for their propane tank, or take them to lunch. Sometimes I tell them I don’t have anything for them.

    It’s pretty much a given that if I’m there, they’ll ask for a little cash. Many have admitted to me that they’ll buy beer with it. Some of them are actually very responsible with what I can give them. I’m not sure that matters – Jesus didn’t seem to place any stipulations on the command.

    I don’t know the answer. It’s uncomfortable not knowing, and it’s uncomfortable being in a place where I know I’ll get asked a question to which I don’t know the right answer.

    But… I can’t let all that prevent me from going.

  6. David Woods says:

    The way I see it Tim Day, we both answer to the same Lord and God. I answer for whether or not I gave when the opportunity presented itself, and they answer for what they do with the money. And you are dead-on right in asking the Holy Spirit in the moment about that or anything else IMHO.

  7. Tim Day says:

    I’ve been thinking about this since my last comment.

    This gentleman seems familiar with Scripture, although he appears to be using it to manipulate a loan (or he may need the money more than I do).

    Maybe I should make the most of the opportunitd try to initiate a relationship. I could ask him to have meal with the group and talk to us some more. Maybe even invite his family. We can probably afford it, it may bless them, and as Rick hinted the experience may be worth more than what he’s asking.

  8. chosenrebel says:

    I think i would do everything I could to come up with a hundred dollars on the spot and give it away. But that is just the beginning. …

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