From 0 (Zero) to Mission in 5…4…3…2…

At the outset, I will say that this article is not about the woes of short-term missions. That topic has been treated exhaustively by me and others. A little background: I am a missionary in the Andes Mountains Cloud Forest Region of Ecuador. In our initial years here, we fell, rather quickly, into the mode […]

What About Plowing In Short-Term Missions Trips?

If we’re honest, much of short-term missions is about harvesting. The unsettled urgency to ‘win souls,’ and the expenditures towards that end drive the reaping, plucking, and gathering of ‘fruit.’ In many cases that fruit is considered to be the canny but hesitant confessions of unripened and uncultivated hearts, or the hastily repeated prayers of […]

How exactly, are we supposed to be ‘led by the Spirit’ in Missions?

The idea of ‘being ‘led by the Spirit,’ is often touted and dropped in cliche-esque fashion into Christian conversations. It’s use by others (“You need to be led by the Spirit”), tries to invoke an “ah ha” moment, as if by saying it, the receiver says, “Oh yes, that’s it, that’s the key to everything, ‘being led by […]

I've literally asked 100's of questions about Church Planting, but this one…

I’ve literally asked or tweeted hundreds of questions about Church Planting, Including this one; “The Church Planting Question that could Change Everything!,”and there’s usually been some intense and fruitful midrash, but this one… “Why, biblically speaking, can’t I completely jettison the idea of “church Planting?” was met with dead silence. My friend @Apostlefarm, aka Billy Mitchell  […]

Like God's Manifold Nature, Mission Unfolds Too

Imagine an infinitely unfolding autobiography written on an equally infinite unfolding piece of paper where the author forever reveals himself.  The manifold nature of God is like that.  It gives me great comfort to know that God is manifold and that He will never cease to be so.  It has been popular of late to […]

This Quote about Church was Good until…

I read a lot. Right now, I’m reading, amongst other things, “Understanding Christian Mission: Participation in Suffering and Glory”  I keep bumping into quotes in this book that make me want to stand up and shout “YES!” and then get a bit deflated when the quote, or the idea, boomerangs back to church as institution, […]

The 'Church' Only Exists When She Exercises Her Missionary Charge.

This is a follow-up post, of sorts, to the article “Two Churches, One City, Almost No Common Ground in Mission – An Interactive Scenario.” That post and this one are designed to catalyze conversations with your missions committees, small groups, and church leaders about the ‘Missio Dei,’ the Latin Christian theological term that can be translated […]

Two Churches, One City, Almost No Common Ground in Mission – An Interactive Scenario

In a medium-sized city in North America there are two churches, both of which are very committed to Christian mission. Church A is located on the rim of the city with an easy commute to the city center. This church is fairly wealthy, and they have a tradition of using much of their money to […]

Does the Church still need Missionaries?

With the diversity of ethnicities represented in our own local communities, with the advancement of social technologies, with ‘churches’ springing up virtually everywhere, with the ever rising dangers of a world in conflict, and with the sheer availability of the gospel even in the remotest of places, why does the Church still need missionaries? Isn’t […]

24 Things World Christians Wish North American Short-Term Missionaries Would Keep Doing…

One June 1st 2014, my blog post titled; ‘24 Things World Christians Wish North American Short-Term Missionaries Would Quit Doing…‘ caused quite the ruckus on the internet and was followed by a barrage of comments on this blog and many others. In fact, of the 800+ articles I’ve written, it remains the most popular ever. […]