A missionary is thought of as a person sent on a religious mission in a foreign country. After all, Jesus did say, “Go into the world and preach the gospel to all.” People that leave what they know to go somewhere brand new are walking as a missionary in faith. But all Christians are sent on a religious mission whether they go to another country or not.
You could be called a missionary any time that you go into an area that is made up of mostly unbelievers. Your school, your workplace, your neighborhood—all of these places are filled with not-yet-believers. Basically, every place that you go has the potential to include at least one unbeliever. So, missionary type work needs to be carried out.
Missionaries in foreign countries prepare by learning a new language, finding out about that country’s culture, and researching the physical needs of the area.
How to the Same Thing Wherever You Are:
Immerse yourself into their culture.
Unbelievers have a different way of living than churchgoers. You might want to see some of their culture firsthand. Of course, I’m not talking about jumping headfirst into sin with them. I’m only talking about going somewhere with them where you can conduct yourself like a Christian in a secular environment. For instance, you might not care about a particular sporting or entertainment event but they do, so you attend with them. While you’re there, you should have many opportunities to bring up your faith in God.
Become fluent in their language.
Speak in phrases and terms that unbelievers will understand. “We are to be in the world and not of it” doesn’t mean that we can’t know and understand secular expressions and references. Cultural references that they can relate to might enhance your relationship and help them to trust and understand you better. For instance, there are a lot of examples in TV and movies that can bring up a spiritual point. Also, don’t use church references and sayings without explaining what you mean. An unbelieving person might not understand phrases like “doing life together,” “loving on people,” or even “doing unto others.” However, they will understand “being friends,” “caring for people,” or “acts of kindness.”
Find a need and seek to fulfill it.
When you see someone in need, rush to help them just like a missionary in a foreign country often brings people medical aid, education, food, or clean drinking water. Be conscious of the many needs all around you and then do what you can to help. There are plenty of people with physical needs everywhere and there are multitudes of spiritual needs as well. Is somebody having trouble with their work or school assignment? Sit with them and help. Is a single mother that you know looking tired or frustrated? Take her kids out for ice cream and let her relax at home for a bit. Wherever there are people, there are plenty of needs. No one is exempt from problems.
Share the teachings of the Bible with other people.
When someone is having trouble making a decision, tell them about a time that you had trouble coming to a conclusion and something in the Bible or a teaching at church helped you to find the answer. If somebody is very worried about something, share with them how you believe that God is always with you bringing you peace of mind. You don’t necessarily have to use the exact chapter and verse number. You can simply share the concepts of the Bible: sowing and reaping, forgiveness, kindness, love, and even the consequences of doing bad or wrong things.
Do good and act with integrity.
No matter where you find yourself, you can conduct yourself with the highest integrity. Live by a moral code that unbelievers may not understand. They may not understand what you’re doing, but they still might take note of how you conducted yourself. If a group of people are gossiping about another person, don’t contribute. Better yet, say something positive about the same person. If people in your group are planning to drink too much, you can drink only soda or water and be available as a designated driver. Don’t just follow along with the crowd; do something different.
Live with a random acts of kindness attitude.
No matter where you are, stay alert to the people all around you. Sit down next to someone who is sitting alone and start a conversation. Let someone who is in a hurry ahead of you in a line. Pay for the lunch of the person behind you in a drive-thru. Perform expected and unexpected acts of kindness. Live your life as if the Lord is right beside of you at all times—because indeed He is.
Please pray with me:
Dear Lord, help me to continuously be aware of all people around me every single day. Where there are people, there are needs. Give me Your eyes to see some of those needs and the wisdom to know how to help as well. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Jennifer Heeren loves to write and wants to live in such a way that people are encouraged by her writing and her attitude. She loves to write devotional articles and stories that bring people hope and encouragement. Her cup is always at least half-full, even when circumstances aren’t ideal. She regularly contributes to Crosswalk.com. She lives near Atlanta, Georgia with her husband. Visit her at www.jenniferheeren.com.
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