Mission Trip by What Other Name?

mission tripOne of my favorite books of all time is Love Does. I can wholeheartedly say, “I’m with you, Bob. We need to become love in a world full of setbacks and difficult people.” If you want to know whether you currently have what it takes to really love people, all you have to do is read and reflect on the first short story in Love Does. I encourage you to sit down with your spouse and friends to honestly answer whether you could have done what Bob did. I was so moved in my faith from Loves Does, I had to follow it by reading Everybody Always.

Many friends know that I combine my love of travel and love of people by planning and going on short-term mission trips. Making new friends across the globe is one of my yearly highlights. Goff (2018) encourages us to go out into the world: “Instead of saying you’re a missionary, why not go somewhere to learn about your faith from the people you find there and be as helpful as you can be?” (p. 73). The simplicity of his question resonated with me, because I always learn and receive as much as I give. Going on mission is a gift to both the sender and receiver, and God speaks to me on every trip through the people, conversations, visions, and symbols.

Bob further challenges us that if we’re going to be more like Jesus, we need to trade in words that are familiar to us and use ones that Jesus did. Jesus never went on “mission trips”—he just loved people as encountered them which led me to ask, “What would be a better substitute for the vernacular of a mission trip?”

Instead of mission, would serving, loving, caring, connecting, learning, or helping be better adjectives? Would adventure, journey, travel, voyage, passage, expedition, or crossing be a better word for trip? Although I’m partial to serving, it doesn’t capture the duality of the impact. If you ask me, I’m partial to a Love & Learning Journey. What resonates with you?

References

Goff, B. (2012). Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.

Goff, B. (2018). Everybody Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People. Nashville, TN: Nelson Books.


About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional coach with an extensive background in leadership, premarital/marriage, and financial coaching. She coaches individuals and couples as well as designs and facilitates workshops. She has a passion to help people be the best versions of themselves.  You can learn more about Sandra by visiting her website at www.shinecrossingsministry.com.

 

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