Missions Leadership in churches often changes, whether it’s the missions pastor or the group of faithful volunteers that keep it going, change is inevitable. So I got to thinking, what are the best resources for getting replacements started in this new role?
My guess is, those of you who have been around awhile can guess my first recommendation; the Perspectives on the World Christian Movement course. Now I realize that the course is not offered everywhere at all times, but if there is anyway you could take this class, you have to do it. There is a lot of reading but it is worth every moment you spend on it.
What about books? Usually folks don’t have a ton of time to read a lot of books, so I’ll keep the list short. I’m a big fan of When Helping Hurts and it talks about a whole lot more than avoiding the pitfalls of dependency. Loving the Church, Blessing the Nations is a great missions book but from the perspective of the local church. Of course, The Global Missions Handbook is a one-stop shop for folks who are going overseas and what the steps are, so a missions director needs to know this information. Piper’s Let The Nations Be Glad has been a classic for a long time, though I do like a little ditty that is a bit on the simpler side called 2020 Vision though I have never heard anyone else recommend it besides me (which probably tells you something about me).
What about news? There are lots of resources out there. Brigada is something you must subscribe to. About every week you get an update of coming events, new things happening in missions, and lots of other helpful information. I also subscribe to Evangelical Missions Quarterly which will really keep you informed as to the latest in thinking in missions.
What about organizations to join? I would definitely hook up with MissioNexus. They serve both churches as well as mission agencies as well. They also do occasional conferences that are worth attending.
How about web-sites? I hesitate to start writing here as this is a daunting list. I will just say go to Links to Cool Places button at UnMissions.net and hang out there for a bit. Its a dizzying list of different websites. I do like the LearnCareGo site as a first stop though it can be dizzying as well. Go to a coffee shop, bring your internet device of choice and just cruise around it for awhile, bookmarking the places that you want to explore further. Also, spend a bit of time at Catalyst Services. They have some great articles.
Speaking of coffee, I would then Contact Dave and / or Contact Joe and grab a cup of coffee. That may be of dubious benefit, but we do offer comic relief. Seriously, we will pray for you and are happy to do a free consult of what you presently have in place and talk about possibilities for what might be next.
Is there any resource out there that you feel would qualify for “The five things a missions director shouldn’t leave behind if going to a desert island? Let us know.