About Me

My photo
My passion is helping others defend themselves and their families. I am an NRA Certified pistol instructor, a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - North Cincinnati, and the state leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - Ohio. I also have a heart for the Lakota people and lead mission teams to the Pine Ridge Reservation each year, am founder and director of Backpacks For Pine Ridge,, and do various volunteer work in my own community. My greatest joy is being a grandma and hanging out with my husband of 30+ years.

Friday, December 29, 2006

I Need a New Word

It occurs to me that as I am writing about what I'm learning from my experiences with mission trips, I really need a new word to replace "missions". I have a feeling that my defination of missions and the typical Christian's defination of missions are probably pretty different.

I imagine that most Christians would define missions as going to another place for the purpose of sharing the gospel and converting people to Christianity.

That is not my defination. I'm not opposed to that because I do believe that God works in many different ways and that approach has clearly worked in some cases.

I can't say for certain if it was the goal of the other trips I've been on (Romainia, Haiti) but the goal of the Pine Ridge trips has never been to convert people. Only on one occasion did we even attempt to share the story of Jesus and that was after we had been there for a few years.

For me (and I hope our group) witnessing to people is not our goal. Not that we won't do it if given a clear opportunity, but it's just not our main goal. Our goal isn't even charity or giving to the "poor" although we do give each child a backpack full of school supplies. Our main goal is to be Jesus with skin on to some people and build relationships with them. We hope that as a result of that they will see Christ in us and be drawn to Him, but if that doesn't happen, that's OK. I guess the difference is that rather that "witnessing" to people, we strive to be a witness to them - to simply live out the gospel as any follower of Jesus would do.

So, I'm not sure what you might call that, but that's what we attempt to do.

It's much simpler but it's far from easier.


BarBarA said...

I understand the hesitancy to use the phrase missions trip - because that is exactly what most people picture (including me) but when you use it I understand what you mean. I think your type of "mission trip" is far more effective and it's the type I would like to be involved with someday.

But what word....hmmm. I'll let one of your really intellectual intelligent readers come up with a different word...David, Gary, Bruce?

BJ said...

I agree with you. The point of a missions trip is to be Jesus to people. Isn't it funny though that no matter what your goal for such a trip, YOU always end up being impacted by those you are serving. I've been on trips all over the country, and Peru, Mexico, Ecuador, and the thing I walk away with is no matter how many times I think I have something to offer, when I leave I've been impacted by God in absolutely incommunicable ways.

Here are a few random hacks at new names:

1.) Bless you, bless me
2.) Give and receive
3.) Jesus trips
4.) Isaiah trips (Isaiah 6:8, "Here am I God. Send me")
5.) Service Sacrifices

okay, now I'm trying too hard. lol. Thanks for your post.

Anonymous said...

I can't think of one right now, and Amber since you take more of these trips than anyone, you should call it whatever you like.

I appreciate you and Brian for thinking and doing things outside the box and being bright lights.