Missions Launch

Helping those who help the world

3 Easy Ways to Get Plugged In

by admin |

Local Church, Long-Term Missions, Missions Organizations, Picking a Trip, Planning to Go

Plugged inMany people don’t realize the wealth of easily-accessible resources that connect people into missions and often give up because they simply can’t find a starting point. Here are some places that can help you get connected.

1. Start at the Church

Many churches have missions programs they can link you to, which may include local opportunities as well as ones abroad. Even if your church doesn’t have anything currently established, they will most likely have the names of any missionaries connected with the church. That leads us to door number two…

2. Long-Term Missionaries

If you know of anyone who is ministering long-term in another country, you should try contacting them. Let them know you are wanting to get involved in some way. Missionaries can almost always use a little more help in one way or another, and even if they don’t need the extra hands at the moment, they will greatly appreciate your desire and might be able to give you another lead.

3. Missions Organizations

Missions organizations are non-profit groups, usually unconnected with a single church, whose vision is to see people go to the nations. There are nearly unlimited opportunities found within these types of organizations. Many will have trips designed to fit certain gifts that you may have. For example, I lived in Perth, Australia on the base of a missions organization called Youth With A Mission (YWAM). They offer schools of worship, media, visual art, and evangelism just to name a few, in bases around the world. Each of this schools involved a short term (2-3 month) outreach that taught students how to use their skills in ministry. There are many organizations, like YWAM, that provide amazing opportunities to go to the nations.

Photo by jeremyfoo

Travel Tip: The Perfect Carry-On

by admin |

Planning to Go, Travel

The ideal carry-on will be small, lightweight, and serve two purposes: provide you with anything you need during travel and anything you will need if your luggage makes a detour through Boston while you are on your way to Amsterdam. When packing a carry-on, keep these things in mind:

Size, Weight and Number

I know you’ve probably seen people rolling huge suitcases through the airports with their laptop bags strapped to the top. Sometimes the combined size of these bags rivals that of a small child, but I do assure you that however seemingly unenforced, airlines do have size restrictions Carry on Baggagefor carry-ons luggage. All airlines have their own policies, but generally maximum size is measured by a single number – the sum of the total dimensions (L x W x H). For example, a common size limit is 45″ on domestic flights, which could be any combination of dimensions (eg. 24 x 14 x 9). Most airlines also allow for a single “personal item” in addition to one piece of carry-on luggage. Personal items would include things like laptops, cameras, umbrellas, purses, etc. Bear in mind that international airlines tend to be less lenient when enforcing their policies – which are often times more strict to begin with. Airlines also reserve the right to adjust their policies as they see fit, at any point in time, so be sure to check their website prior to each trip, noting their guidelines for size, weight and number of carry-on pieces. The last thing you want is to end up frantically unpacking and repacking on the floor of the airport to meet their airline’s restrictions.

In Case Your Bags Don’t Keep Up With You

It happens sometimes; you’ve landed in one city and your bags in another – if they even left the ground in the first place! While you may be sure this couldn’t happen to you, it’s always better to be safe than sorry, right? So when you pack your carry-on, think about what you couldn’t possibly go without if you had to live out of only your carry-on for a few days. Pack one change of clothes, or for the sake of your team mates / family, at least pack a change of underwear! Make sure you include all medications you take; the last thing you want – on top of losing your luggage – is a health crisis. If you have any important documents or information (is someone meeting you at the airport? or do you have an address of the place you are going?) that you will need upon arrival, pack those as well. Chances are, everything goes smoothly, but you won’t regret being prepared.

During Travel

Yes, it is important that you maintain sanity during travel – especially if you have a day or more to spend between various planes and terminals. With any extra space and weight you have left, put in some things to keep you occupied – books, iPods, games – whatever you would enjoy. Unless you are particularly fond of airline food or can survive for long periods of time on peanuts, you may also want to throw in some snacks. Think: non-perishable items. Granola bars, dried fruit, and crackers are all great options. And just to be safe, make sure to travel with some cash. You never know when you’ll end up needing something you didn’t plan for, and sometimes a credit/debit card company will flag an out-of-country purchase as “suspicious” even if you let them know that you will be traveling.

DO NOT Pack These in Your Carry-on:

  • Sharp Objects
  • Flammables – No lighters. One book of safety matches allowed.
  • Explosives
  • Snow globes – No, I did not make this up. Check your snow globe or leave it at home.

If you are packing any kind of liquid, lotion, gel, etc. it must be in a bottle 3 oz. or smaller, and each bottle must be inside a single, clear, quart-sized plastic zipper bag. Only one is allowed per traveler. Traveling with a water bottle is a good idea, but leave it empty until you pass through the security checkpoint. Check out TSA’s website for updates and more detailed information.
If you keep your passport in your carry-on make sure to keep it easily accesible, yet well hidden – and never let your carry-on out of your sight.

When packing keep all of this in mind and also remember that you will be carrying this with you for the duration of your travel, so even if their is no weight limit, keep it light. You’ll thank yourself 20-30 hours into it.

Photo by mil8

Stories from Afar

by admin |

Missions Emotional Issues, Planning to Go

I’ve always enjoyed listening to missions stories. Some of them amuse me like when I learned that the McDonald’s in India serves chicken curry instead of hamburgers. Other antidotes about communities coming to Christ are inspirational. However, some of these tales are intimidating.  Big BugThe wingspan of insects in some foreign countries or the rumors of illness can cause us to panic, not to mention the thoughts of self-doubt that may arise in our minds about our own insufficiency. Our job as missionaries is not to be perfect, but our main tasks are to trust and obey God. This post is dedicated to offering encouragement to any missionaries that may be feeling nervous about his or her impending trip and to offer some advice.

New surroundings call for new levels of trust. Keeping God first in our priorities reminds us that He is in control, instead of us, and eliminates our fear or doubt. Mother Theresa would spend several hours in prayer and Scripture reading in the mornings before she saw anyone who needed her assistance. She spent time refueling in the presence of God and then went to the streets for the rest of the day. She was able to rely on God’s strength to help people and not her own. 

Obedience to God sometimes means that we will experience discomfort, but these are great opportunities to go deeper with God. Most of us feel nervous or afraid before going on missions because we are entering into something unknown. The good news is that God knows everything about the people and the nation that you are going to and he also knows exactly how you will handle every situation before it happens. He is your greatest guide to the adventure you are going on. Take comfort in knowing that God is with you and He is in control.

Photo by world_waif

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