Explore News: ‘What misconceptions did you have about what missionary life is like (that have since been debunked)?’
April 2022

Have you ever imagined what life as a missionary might look like? In this month’s Explore News, our panelists share the misconceptions they had about missionary life before going to the field. How might their advice change your perceptions?  

Make Sure to Match Who You Are with Where You Go

"I grew up on the field, so I had a pretty clear image of missionary life.  I guess I am grateful to see that missions is varied these days.  Traditional church planting and humanitarianism still are vital but one can go overseas with any skill and serve him.  As long as we don’t forget to glorify him, love others and tell them he has a plan for them, all of the experiences and skills he dishes out are viable. It comes down to finding a good match between what he creates us as, and a place where that is needed."

Have Patience with Team Building and Language Learning

"Despite feeling very blessed by the relationships on my team, I think I came in expecting that our team would more quickly feel close. The reality is that we did connect with many teammates, and some fairly quickly, but not with everyone. These relationships can be a big blessing, but they don't always happen the way we imagine. The other thing is how long language learning takes, and how it never really ends. It is possible that Russian is just more difficult than other languages, but as I have talked with people this is a common feeling."

What we imagine missionary life to be like can be distorted. Even missionaries can have this problem! But we are here to help you prepare! Get in touch with us below.Photo by: Milada Vigerova on Unsplash

Be Prepared for Change

"After my short amount of time on the field, I have come to experience that no matter how you strategize, we are working with people, and people are complex. I have had training in multiple mission strategies. Even when we plan and strategize, there will always be adjustments. The strategy will always look different in real life than it does in theory. Because people are just complex, and the Holy Spirit sometimes changes plans too!"

Know What You Are Getting Into... Do Your Research!

"I think we had many misconceptions about what missionary life is like. Do your research about the country you are considering, and what the mission team there is like. Also, thoroughly research the local church you will be partnering with. Ask missionaries there about their everyday life. Does it sound like something you want to do? Really, the more information you have, the better. Don't take a shortcut on research!"

Maybe their experiences have prompted you to take your next step on your missions journey. We’d love to talk to you about it!

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