We started a new blog series last week about preparing for the mission field. I think a very important preparation for the field is serving in your own local church. How can someone surrender to be a missionary, to take his family across the world to reach and serve others when he is not doing so in his own church? That just does not make sense! I am very thankful for my home church and Pastor. Pastor Lawrence gave me opportunity after opportunity to serve in our church. I served with children in junior church, helped in special teen events, helped work with the nursery ministry, the bus ministry, special days, senior saints ministry, revivals, conferences, website ministry, missions team, outreach ministry, teaching Sunday School, and many other aspects of ministry like cleaning, unclogging toilets, laying pine straw, pressure washing sidewalks, and the like. I certainly did not know it at the time, but God was using these different ministries to prepare me. So how do you get prepared for the mission field? Get busy serving in your church! There is always something to do in the church! I have been in over 300 churches through the deputation process and there was not one church that didn’t have an open area of service in ministry! Get involved. If you are involved, get more involved!
Maybe you don’t want to be a missionary, you still need a ministry in your local church. This goes beyond preparing for the mission field, it should be what we all do as Christians. You are a member of the body of Christ and you have a function in the ministry (1 Corinthians 12:12-31). Every member has a function just like every member of the body has a function. The only part of the body that doesn’t have a function is excess fat that sits on the body doing nothing but weighing the body down. No one wants to be “the excess fat” in the body of Christ! Don’t just sit there in the pew, serve in your church!
This by no means makes you prepared for the mission field, but it is a necessary step for sure! The man who is not serving in his church will not magically change on the plane ride over to the mission field. You are only more tomorrow what you are today. So step one to preparing for the mission field is get busy serving in your own church! The next steps in preparing for the mission field are much more concentrated. This is a very necessary foundation!