By Eric Wenger | August 1, 2018
When is the last time you took a road trip? Where did you go? What were the highlights of the trip? What surprises did you encounter? How did you navigate obstacles that arose?
My family and I decided to set out on a two week road trip this summer. We traveled through Wisconsin, Iowa, Missouri, and Oklahoma on the first part of our journey in order to spend our first week in Oklahoma City. Week two included drives through parts of Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois, and Wisconsin with stays in Texas and Missouri. We ended up driving over 3,000 miles together.
The highlights of our trip were many. We reconnected with relatives and friends, visited colleges, and spent a week in Oklahoma City on a short-term mission trip led by my eldest daughter. The mission trip theme, Reckless Love, really hit home for me. I was especially stretched spiritually by our study of Proverbs 19:21 which says, "Many are the plans in a person's heart, but it is the LORD's purpose that prevails" (NIV).
We definitely encountered some surprises along the way! There were toll roads we didn't know about, news from family and friends that we hadn't heard, and great relationships built with people we hadn't previously met. I was inspired by the personal stories of people who were lost in darkness, were rescued by Jesus, and are now serving in Jesus' name!
Obstacles did arise during our adventure. A few roads didn't correspond with our directions, construction zones are rarely predictable, and 100+ degree weather can certainly add to the dynamics of a roofing project. Most of all, I was reminded of how important it is to always be prepared to share the hope I have in Jesus as I heard and saw the real life fears, dreams, struggles, and joys of people I've known for a long time and of those I was meeting for the very first time.
Our family road trip took place at the same time I was thinking about this article. I started recognizing in a new way how valuable mission coaching is for road trips. After all, Jesus commissioned all of His disciples to go make disciples. He is sending us. That means every day is a vital part of our road trip with Jesus.
Please go back to the first paragraph. Take the time to answer the questions for yourself, if you haven't already. When you're done, answer the following set of questions.
What is your mission road trip like right now? Where are you going? What are the highlights of your trip so far? What surprises are you encountering? How are you navigating the obstacles that arise? What next steps will you take to move forward on your road trip with Jesus?
I could certainly ask you more questions. This is just a taste of mission coaching for road trips. I encourage you to share these questions with at least one person who travels with you on mission. Also, please prayerfully consider contacting me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss the best way for the Center for United States Missions to engage you, your family, your staff, your colleagues, and your congregation in mission coaching and/or mission coach training opportunities.
"Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things" (Colossians 3:1-2, NIV).
Joy in Jesus!
Resources You Can Use
A through provoking read for mission road trip adventurers - Reaching the Unreached: Becoming Raiders of the Lost Art by Peyton Jones
Mission Moments is the e-newsletter sent by the Center for U.S. Missions to bring information and encouragement to all who desire to share God's great love in Jesus Christ with others. Permission is given to copy this article for distribution within your congregation or organization. Please credit the author and the Center for United States Missions. For more information contact the Center at (952)-221-0362, or visit our website: www.c4usm.org
Center for U.S. Missions – Contact Information
Email us at: | Rev. Dr. Peter Meier, Executive Director; email@example.com | Rev. Eric Wenger, Director of Mission Coaching; firstname.lastname@example.org| Kathy Meier, Coordinator; email@example.com | Mil Behnken, Office Manager; firstname.lastname@example.org