Tips for Effective Missions

New church plants and even established churches sometimes lack funds and manpower, but there are several small, practical things that can be done to facilitate effective missions.

  1. Be selective. When we consider all the avenues for missions, it’s easily overwhelming. Churches can choose either to be OK at a lot of things or to be excellent at a few things. Especially if your church lacks resources, doing 1 or 2 mission action projects well is more effective than trying to juggle multiple projects. Be sensitive to the passions of the people within your church, take time to research issues of interest, and then choose 1 or 2 local and global missions on which to focus.
  2. Utilize existing ministries. There is no need to reinvent the wheel. Partnering with existing ministries and organizations preserves resources, decreases the need for extra manpower, and more effectively builds life-changing relationships because the focus can be on the people instead of the logistics. Don’t automatically shun partnering with secular organizations or even organizations sponsored by other religions. While working to meet people’s physical needs, you can demonstrate Christ’s love to both those being served and those serving alongside you.
  3. Be consistent. While one-time projects and donations are certainly helpful, when a church can be a consistent presence within a community, its influence is long lasting and profound. Consistency allows for building relationships, fostering trust, and developing reliability within the community. Imagine a world where all people knew without a doubt they could turn to Christians and be helped in times of need. What a testimony that would be to the love of Christ!
  4. Model sacrifice. The leadership and structure of the church must set the example of sacrifice for the sake of missions. Being a missionary is not for the faint of heart. I value that my pastor sacrifices time in the pulpit so our church can go into the community and actually do missions together. I also value how my church demonstrates its commitment to the commandment of “loving others as we love ourselves.” Our budget is set up so that 50 percent of our tithes and offerings go straight into the community. The fact that my church is willing to financially love others as we love ourselves has challenged me to examine my own sacrifices for the sake of missions in my community.

Allison Markwood serves on North Carolina WMU’s executive board and has been a part of two successful church plants.

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