Summary: Many people wonder if short term missions is really worth all the time, effort and expense. Here are many reasons to engage in the helping to fulfill the great commission through short-term missions.
The Benefits of Short Term Missions (Philemon 1:12-25)
Many people wonder if short term missions is really worth all the time, effort and expense. Here are many reasons to engage in the helping to fulfill the great commission through short-term missions.
"I am sending him - who is my very heart - back to you... not as a slave, but as a dear brother. So if you consider me a partner, welcome him as you would welcome me... I do wish brother, that I may have some benefit from you in the Lord, refresh my heart in Christ. Confident of your obedience, I write to you knowing that you will do even more than I ask. And one more thing: Prepare a guest room for me, because I hope to be restored to you in answer to your prayer."
Benefits of short term missions:
1. BLESSINGS: People who engage in obeying the great commission are to be blessed abundantly by God. There are multiple ways to make an impact for the great commission and no good work goes unrewarded by God. (Heb. 6:10)
2. VISION: People are given greater enlightenment about God, His purposes and the people groups of the world who are yet to understand that Jesus is the only way, the truth and the life. (John 14:6)
3. PURPOSE: People are given a heightened sense of meaning, fulfillment and direction when they give themselves to serve on short term mission projects. New objectives are learned about God’s greater plans for the world beyond our own limited personal perspective.
4. REWARDS: Proverbs 11:24,25 says, "One man gives freely, yet gains even more; another withoholds unduly but comes to poverty. A generous man will prosper, he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed." Those who give are always going to be rewarded in quantity and quality by the Lord.
5. PROJECTS COMPLETED: People are often able to complete new buildings, worship halls, or training clinics that fulfill the needs of people on the field.
6. RESOURCES PROVIDED: Provisions are often appreciated by people who lack essentials in cross-cultural settings. The wealth of Americans can be used for the qualitative and quantitative expansion of the kingdom of God if they are given in wise ways.
7. DRAWING CAPACITY: Short termers often attract attention from locals who are interested in seeing their evangelistic films or participating in their medical clinics or services. Fresh faces also provoke a sense of curiosity from all sectors of the community that will open up many new doors for the gospel.
8. MATERIAL BENEFITS: Short termers often provide people with training, transport and educational materials that could be difficult to get without the help of short term missionary projects.
9. LONG-TERM COMMITMENTS: Many short termers develop long term commitments to missions that help them grow in their ministry maturity. People who want to be disciple-makers, leaders, reproducers and multipliers often grow in their Christ-likeness when they launch by faith and obedience in a setting where they have to depend on God completely in a cross-cultural setting.
10. PRAYERS INCREASED: When people engage in short term missions they and their network of friends and family pray more fervently. People tend to pray for things that they have some kind of personal involvement with.
11. LINKS ESTABLISHED: Communities, churches and families develop links of communications across cultures as a result of short term missions. Many barriers of culture, geography and perceptions are broken down as a result of the favorable relationships that are established in short term missions.
12. EXPERIENCE: Enhance discernment into the will of God is given to those who engage in short term missions. "But solid food is for the mature who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil." Greater insight is given to those who obey the Lord in short term missions as their experience teaches them things they could not learn any other way.
13. DONATIONS: People who have been on short term missions tend to give much more generously to missions the rest of their lives. More volunteers are enlisted as a result of participation on short term missions as well.
14. FULL-TIME MISSIONARIES: People who go on short term missions are much more likely to commit themselves to full time missionary service. The baby-boomers and generations x and y are much more experiential learners than their parents. They often need first hand experience before they are willing to commit themselves to foreign missionary service.
15. LOCAL MINISTRIES ENHANCED: It is rare to find people who have engaged in short term missions not to be apt to engage in local ministries with great enthusiasm, effectiveness and frequency.
16. MOTIVATION: A new sense of vitality, enthusiasm and encouragement can be given to those long term missionaries when they are injected with the motivation of short termers. The lives of the local believers are warmed by the spirit of cross-cultural servanthood that the short termers display.