Churches are exposed more and more to people from other cultures and other religions with the influx of migrants, refugees and business people looking for a better life. We have more of an opportunity now than ever to obey Jesus’ Great Commission and help make disciples of all nations (Matt 28:18-19). But how do you prepare your people to evangelize and disciple people from other cultures who are living in your area?
What to look for when you chose missions resources for your church
Any resource, whether it be a training course, a book, or a missions websites should be credible. As the Scriptures say, a fig tree cannot bear olives and a salt spring cannot produce fresh water.
(Jam 3:12). Are the authors and course developers missions experts? Are they or have they actually been there themselves? In other words, do they know what they are talking about at a practical level? Will they inspire Christians through their passion for reaching the lost?
Is the resource relevant to your situation? For example, is it relevant if you’re training your church to evangelize migrants and refugees from other cultures and religions? Or perhaps you’d like to prepare a group of people from your church to go on a short term trip to an Unreached People Group. Will the resource help them choose the right place to go and understand what they experience once they are there? Look for outcomes that will help people to become effective in what they are doing in God’s Kingdom.
Resources should be flexible, whether they are used to mobilizing Christians, or used as training for short term teams. Look for training where individuals in the church can learn when and where it suits them. As you know, most Christians have busy lives and it would be ideal if they could learn at their own pace. Ask yourself, can trainings be presented to groups? Group learning with lots of discussions is vital for adult learning, because research has shown that people tend to learn more from their peers than from lecturers.
Cost is always an important decision point. But money should never be a barrier to learning. Therefore, look for high-quality resources that are freely available or at a low cost. We all tend to think that inexpensive things can’t be any good, but this is not always the case. There are many free missionary trainings and other resources that are excellent in content, Biblically based and taught by experienced people.
Maybe you’ve found a good book or missions training that you encourage your congregation to use. But how do you measure whether they’ve actually read the book or done the training? Expensive university courses obviously provide certificates and accreditation, but what if you choose a free training option? Look for a course that awards a digitally signed certificate. Usually these certificates can be shared by sending the URL of the certificate web page to others. Having such a feature would be very beneficial to mission pastors and short term coordinators because they will be able to verify whether someone has indeed completed a certain course successfully. This is helpful in the case of short term trips to know that people who are going on an outreach together are on the same page. It could also help weed out the ones who are not really committed to the idea.
Have you looked at whether Didasko Academy’s courses would be suitable for missions training and for church missions mobilization? Please do. To evaluate the contents of the courses, go to https://imap.dasko.org/evaluator.