We know that, as field partners, we are practicing obedience to our Lord’s Great Commission, “Go ye therefore into all the world…” which is fulfilling in-and-of itself.
However, it is also worthwhile to consider what WE get out of mission life. A recent survey conducted by Missio Nexus (a global network of mission organizations), gives an encouraging snapshot of the satisfaction experienced by those of us in the field.
We have all experienced the intimidation of transitioning to a foreign country and culture (granted, some more than others). The survey showed, though, that 96 percent of respondents feel as though they function well in the culture where they are planted.
Beyond merely functioning well, we can all agree that actually “assimilating” into the culture of our mission field helps us to form a stronger bond to our communities. Eighty-four percent of respondents believe they have assimilated into the culture where they minister.
Many respondents commented specifically about the calling they experienced and how well their particular skills fit into the field where they landed.
Calling to a Role: “I chose to be in Latin America because of [my] Spanish Language abilities. The position in Bolivia suited my college education.”
Calling to Obedience: “[I experienced a] very clear calling by God. It came entirely through prayer.”
Calling to a People Group: “I believed this country would be an ideal location for our ministry, and I could use my [foreign] language skills.”
Of course, statistics don’t tell the largest part of the story, which is the impact that God’s workers have on the people-groups we serve. But it is sometimes useful to step back, look at the way people are functioning, and be amazed at the way God calls, equips, and meets the needs of those who love and serve Him.
Linda Hayman, Global Teams Communications Volunteer