Preparation for a mission trip is a lot of work. You need to arrange your passport, visa, arrange documents, and pack all the right stuff in the suitcase. But while making all the arrangements for your mission trip, we forget to prepare for the most important things, which is preparing ourselves for the mission trip spiritually! Going into a completely new culture is quite overbearing. Preparing ourselves spiritually before the trip ensure that we have God’s aid beside us in a new land. Being spiritually prepared also helps us to tackle stressful situations when we are dealing with difficulties on the trip.
Going on a mission trip is a unique spiritual experience on its own. It is a time when you feel the presence of God. You get to know the powers of God in a better sense. You must keep your mind always open to the divine signals sent by God. God often sends us various kind of mixed signals in form of mission trips. These signals are something that we completely unexpect. Having the blessing o God will ensure that we achieve motivation and success while being our mission trip. So, if you want your work to have an eternal impact, then preparing spiritually for your trip should be your priority.
Here are some ways that will help you to contribute to the spiritual purpose of God while being on your mission trip:
You can pick up a topic of your interest in your mission trip and focus your prayers on that area. There areas can range from relationship to health, bonding with team, flexibility at work, cultural adjustment, home sickness, scriptures, etc. Along with your goals, you can also pray for your entourage. The colleagues or ministers that form a part of your mission trip can also be included in your prayer to harmonize and magnify the spiritual aspect of the journey.
Different people prefer doing prayer in their own different ways. It will be a great opportunity to discuss the prayer style of your group and practice unique prayer styles with them. You can pray by forming a group, a circle, around bonfire, or any other collective way you find suitable with your colleagues. You can also enquire with your organization about the cultural and praying style of our destination to help you become acquainted with the spiritual practices of the place beforehand. Using the praying style of your trip destination will help a great deal to connect with the positive energies of the place. To take an example, people in Guatemala like to prayer together in a circle. Their praying style is loud and the prayer ends with “amen”.
Organizing a Commissioning Service
Commissioning for a service is a great way to move out of your comfort zone and be of some help to the community. The kind of commission work that your team will do will also help you to connect with the church in a particular manner. The commissioning service can be best complemented by a litany or a song written by your own or your pastor. After the service is over, make sure to organize a potluck. It will ensure that you teammates can peacefully and openly interact with the members of church before leaving for the mission trip.
Share Your Testimonials
You can share your testimony of having a faithful and fruitful experience with God. It will help you to prove to your team that a particular mission trip has a special spiritual value in your life. You can prove that the trip you are soon going to embark upon is a calling by God for you. It will be best if you prepare for this in advance. It will help you to voice out your experiences effortlessly and properly when the situation demands. Pre-trip meetings are a great medium to share these testimonials. These meetings are places where you can encourage your team members to brace for having a spiritual experience on the trip.
Here are some points that you can put up in one of these meetings:
- Share a story when you felt like God was your side. How to prepare for a mission trip spiritually or in what form God showed himself in your life? What changes occurred in your life as a result of such an encounter with God?
- Do not stretch the narrative too long. Three- minute window is the ideal length for the speech.
- Accompany the narrative with interesting example. Make sure that the example you provide are appropriate culturally. For example, some cultures do not tolerate smoking or drinking. Thus, it will be best to have an advance knowledge of a place’s culture and avoid words that may offed the sentiments of people.
- Make Jesus the center of your testimony and how your life revolves around him how to prepare for a mission trip spiritually to achieve God.
- It is best to use colloquial or day-to-day language. Using too much jargon or churchy language will be hard to understand by some people. Unnecessarily heavy words also disrupt the flow of narration.
- Share the changes that have occurred in your life as a result of having a close experience with God.
Daily Group Devotion Practices
While you are on a trip with your team members, it is an ideal time to do devotions together as a group. End of the day is the best time to have group devotions. This is so because the teammates can process and discuss the events that happened throughout the course of the day. Some groups also prefer to have a mini-devotion in the morning during the breakfast time. It can be in the form of a brief prayer, a verse, or simple words of encouragement. If you are thinking how to prepare for a mission trip spiritually, you can also opt to have quiet devotion or personal prayer moments during day time.
Here is a list of thigs that you must discuss during the moments of group devotion:
- High or positive points that happened in the day
- Challenges faced
- Sightings of God
- Funny things that you encountered
- Things you learned about yourself and God
- Challenges or barriers regarding language
- Worship and praise time
- Insight and mutual encouragement
- Prayer answers and requests
Imitating Christ is the best way to guarantee success on your mission trip. Be like Christ in mind, action, and faith. Reading Bible on a regular basis is a very good practice to imbibe the teachings of Christ. This thing takes a lot of discipline and patience. You must open your heart, mind, body, and soul to let the Holy Spirit seep into your being and chisel you into an image of Christ. Mission field demands spiritual, physical, and emotional devotion from your side and the side of your teammates. Having faith in Christ will give you the power to meet every possible challenge you may face during the trip and how to prepare for a mission trip spiritually for a good trip.
Question the Motives Your Have for the Trip
Before embarking on the mission trip, question why you are going on this trip. Apart from your team members, this question should be personally directed and your being and the motive you have behind this trip. Is this mission trip a sort of travel adventure for you or you want to increase your knowledge about the culture of the place? Examine your reasons why you are signing for the mission trip in the first place – are you a student, a teacher, or a leader. So, your heart should be prepared in advance before embarking for the trip. This will help you to open up about what God has in mind for you. This will aid to make your mission trip successful and how to prepare for a mission trip spiritually for divine knowledge.
Seek Wise Words
Bible is a great way to seek wisdom. Apart from that, you should endeavor to find out a wise person such as an insightful friend, a mentor, or a pastor. He or she may help you to seek in depth wisdom while being on your mission trip. Whenever you feel like you are stuck in life or you need some assistance spiritually, then taking help of such a wise person will come of great use. You can even help such a person to pray instead of you. Or, you can ask them to give words from a scripture so that you can gain huge spiritual insight. Even while packing the bag, you can ask a wise person to chant some words so that the positive vibes travel with you on the mission trip.
At the end of the day, we all are aware of the fact that God is the driving force behind all the events happening in our life. Thus, we must never forget that having a spiritual aid with us before going for a mission trip can help a great deal. It will help to gain deep wisdom and connect with your teammates at a stronger level. So, next time you plan to go on a mission trip, keep the above points in your mind to ensure you make the best out of your trip. Having a spiritual experience on your mission trip is something you must not have experienced ever!