Sending Losers to the Mission Field
Someone has said that if your church doesn’t hurt when sending you as a missionary… they probably shouldn’t send you.
There is a caricature of missionaries that they are people who couldn’t get a ministry in the States, so we send them “over there” where the natives will not realize they are incompetent. That certainly wasn’t God’s idea. He chose missionaries from the key leaders in the church at Antioch (Acts 13). Imagine what a void Paul and Barnabas must have left in that church when they left for the mission field. They lost a master theologian, expository preacher, generous giver and chief counselor/encourager. It must have been painful.
We recently asked a pastor if they would hire a missionary applicant to serve on their church staff and he answered, “no.” He went on to indicate that this person would not be qualified to serve as a deacon or elder. Well it is obvious then, that this individual should not be going to the mission field. Missionaries are the “special ops” of the church. They should be the key leaders. It should be painful when they leave for another ministry. But that is the goal of the church… to send equipped people into ministry (Ephesians 4:11-12).
If a person would not leave a vacuum in your church, then don’t send them to the mission field.
Image courtesy www.patch.com