First of all, let’s get this out of the way… Every Christian should have a passport! We believe this because we believe that the Great Commission is a general call to all followers of Jesus. He told us all in Acts 1:8 that “…you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” The conjunction “and” implies that we will be going to other countries, so we need to be prepared for that scenario. Get your passport!
Going on a mission trip is very different from going on a vacation. There is some more preparation that needs to take place. At Grand we require that every person going on a mission trip takes our Child Protection Training. This is taught two or three times per year by a trained counselor and helps you to recognize child abuse, how to report it, and how to keep yourself away from allegations. This is important because many of the places we work, we will be around children. Our next scheduled training is Sunday, January 22 at 3pm in Room 118.
Many of you have also taken our Contingency Training which has been required for all international trips. This training helps participants learn how to handle unexpected things that could happen on a trip, such as a robbery, earthquake, health emergency, kidnapping, etc. We are in the process of revamping this training and will in the near future make this a required class for all mission teams. We are actually going to be formally under a company that provides the resources and training for this through the Arkansas Baptist State Convention.
Beginning soon, we will also be releasing our online Cross-Cultural Class that will help you be a better witness to those in a different culture.
I hope you can tell that we take seriously our preparation to make sure that our people are well-trained to accomplish the tasks that God has called us to on the mission field. But more than just physically prepared, we believe that our people should be spiritually prepared as well. We will be doing more in 2017 to begin helping our teams to better prepare themselves spiritually before they leave on their trip and help them adjust when they return.