July 13, 2024
New Missionaries, Teaming

What type of mission team is best for you and your context?

This entry is part 7 of 7 in the series Types of mission teams In mission work, when engaging unreached people, working in teams is essential. One person cannot do it alone. However, not all mission teams are the same. Over the years, we have observed four main types of teams on the mission field: basketball teams, track teams, X-teams (expedition teams), and combo teams. Each type has its own unique characteristics and purposes. I have written about each of these in a series on types of mission teams, but I thought it might be helpful to summarize our thinking into one post.1 The SEND U wiki also provides a Word document summarizing these 4 different types of teams in point form. Basketball Teams: Working Closely Together A basketball team is a tightly-knit unit, where five players work closely together on the court to defend and score. Similarly, in mission… Read the whole post
Lifelong Learning, New Missionaries, Learning Attitude

What I have learned about teaching in another language

David Benzel has served cross-culturally in both Russia and Ukraine for 30 years. After studying the Russian language in Kyiv, Ukraine, he and his wife moved to Khabarovsk, Far East Russia where he taught for more than a decade at the Far East Russia Bible College. Then in 2008, the Benzels moved to Kyiv and David began teaching at Kyiv Theological Seminary. In the early years in Russia, David taught with the help of a translator. But he has now been teaching and preaching in Russian without a translator for well over twenty years. David is highly respected as a teacher and as someone who loves God’s Word. He will be greatly missed as he transitions to life and ministry back in the United States this year. The SEND U blog editor asked David to share what he had learned about teaching in another language over these many years.… Read the whole post
New Missionaries

The Least of These

Matthew 25:37–40 (NIV) 37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ Although many, including Mother Teresa, have understood Jesus’ reference to “brothers” to include all the poor and oppressed in the world, I don’t believe that fits the context or the way that Jesus uses the term “brother” in the Gospel of Matthew.  Instead, I believe that Jesus is referring specifically to those who are his disciples and are suffering deprivation because… Read the whole post
New Missionaries

Stressed from Core to Cosmos: Article Review

“Ministry is a hazardous occupation! To be in ministry is a ‘high calling’ and a grave responsibility–and therein lie much of the stress and struggle which makes it so hazardous. Anyone who chooses a role in ministry across cultures compounds the hazards almost geometrically.” So begins an article by Lawrence and Lois Dodds entitled “Stressed from Core to Cosmos: Issues and Needs Arising from Cross-Cultural Ministry.” The Dodds were cross-cultural missionaries for many years before founding Heartstream Resources to provide care for people in cross-cultural ministry. This article addresses the familiar topic of struggles that missionaries face. The strength of the article is that it also provides suggestions for dealing successfully with those struggles.… Read the whole post
New Missionaries, Coaching

The Value of Coaching

In our mission organization, we provide a coach for all of our new missionaries at the mid-point of their first term.   This coach meets with the new missionary for a total of 6 times over a 3-month period to help them walk through the process of doing a self-assessment of their spiritual, physical, emotional and relational health.  This 3-month coaching period is called MOP-up (Member Orientation Program under pressure).   SEND’s pre-field training is called MOP or Member Orientation Program, and MOP-up is a follow-up event a few years later.  The whole program seeks to 1) reinforce the pre-field learning, 2) identify what has been learned experientially since arriving on the field, and 3) plan future learning goals for the rest of the first term.  You can read more about this training for first-term missionaries at this link. At the end of the MOP-up experience, we ask the coachees to give… Read the whole post
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