A Missions Gateway

Get involved in missions

If you pay attention to the news, watch YouTube videos, or read social media posts, then you will begin to notice that everyone seems to have a platform whether he or she comes from a religious background or not. People have causes they believe in and are willing to fight for. The numbers of people giving to charities, working with organizations to help those in need, and participating in community service are astounding. Colleges applaud volunteer work, and some high schools now even give special diplomas for students who earn a set number of hours of service. It seems many people have the desire to help others.

The biggest difference between secular acts of service and what we call missions is motivation. When we participate in missions, we meet people’s physical needs to introduce them to Jesus; missions is service with an evangelical focus.

In a world where so many people want to help others, Christians have an amazing opportunity to make a mission out of providing service opportunities.

If you want to get people who are not in a WMU organization involved in missions, first offer them a place to serve. This is one way many church plants experience rapid growth.

Inviting others to serve alongside us removes some of the barriers that keep many people out of churches. Asking someone to help fill children’s backpacks with food is much less intimidating than an invitation to a church service or Bible study. When people know there is a job to do with clear expectations, they do not have to be anxious about if they’ll know when to stand, if they’re dressed appropriately, or if people are judging them for not knowing where to find Hezekiah. Additionally, working toward a common goal levels the playing field between people who may have very different ideas and gives people the proximity and time to build meaningful relationships. Once we’ve established trust and friendship, our acts of service then can become a vehicle for explaining the gospel: we serve because Christ, Who died for us, commands us to love one another and help those in need.

As we serve alongside others and cite the gospel as our motivation, we have great potential to reach both those we are serving and those who serve with us for other reasons. Who knows? Eventually, by the grace of God, maybe their service will become missions.

Allison Markwood serves on North Carolina WMU’s executive board and has been a part of 2 successful church plants.
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