Long-term, Short-term, Frontline, Home Staff.......

I have been thinking lately about the 'labels' that are given to missionaries in our current age. Actually, these days even the word 'missionary' itself is a bit of a label within Christian circles. It annoys me that these labels are used, after all, aren't all Christians meant to be missionaries? It all comes down to your definition of the word Missionary itself. I do take this view, I believe that if you are a born again believer you have been given the task of passing on the good news that there is an answer for that lost feeling (which is more than a feeling). To me, this action of passing this on is the word missionary as a verb.

Frontline, Home Staff, Overseas, Support, Local, Long-term, Short-term etc etc... these are all terms used to describe what KIND of missionary someone is. As much as some of these terms may be necessary I feel that they have been used in the wrong way by some people within the church. It's almost as if you're not a REAL missionary unless you are overseas, in a isolated situation that includes a lot of hardship and obvious sacrifice (and a long time). It's true that it takes a great deal of courage and stepping out in faith to be in that position BUT usually those who are don't see themselves as something to be put on a pedestal.

As Christians we ALL have been given the missionary task and whether you label it as a local task, overseas task or a support or prayer role it really doesn't matter. It's not location or even the type of job you're doing, it's whether you're doing exactly what the Lord asks you to do. To me evangelism (locally) and being a missionary go hand in hand. I've come across a few churches that have the view that 'no, we aren't interested in missions, we're concentrating on our local area' as if they are two different things.

Anyway, after many posts about artwork and projects I do I thought it was high time that I put some of my serious thoughts (and opinions) down. Feel free to debate or disagree with me.

Pic: Us in front of the Sahel Academy sign in Niger.

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