Praying for Southern mission teams
A Bible, passport, some gear and a change of clothes. That’s about all Southern Seminary and Boyce College students need as they venture out to support missionaries serving throughout the world.
For ministry leaders in training, missions teams are not tourism, they are training, they are not vacation but preparation for a vocation, less about observation and more about participation. Each year, the day after Boyce College graduation begins the mission team season for Southern Seminary. From East Asia to South America, students venture out to advance the work of Christ and support the missionary effort of alumni and friends across the world. For some students, this experience will cement the missionary call God has on their life. For others, it will be equip them to be a tenacious advocate for global Great Commission. During the school year, the mission team participants have diligently trained and prepared their hearts and minds. Now with the academic demands of the semester behind them, they are set to deploy. You may not be able to go with us this year, but you can join us in prayer. Below are a few ideas to help structure your prayer:
- For the Southern Mission Teams
- That God will be glorified in how the team members love and serve each other
- For discernment in how to serve and support the career missionaries
- For the inevitable disruptions to yield unexpected opportunities for evangelism
- For humility and flexibility with changing plans and health challenges
- For teachable hearts that are ready to learn from those with whom we partner
- For perception to anticipate and respond to any need at any time
- For timeliness in knowing how to communicate the gospel effectively
- That God will clarify His calling on team members lives to missionary service
- That God will watch over the families of those traveling
- For strangers we will meet
- For God to go before us, preparing hearts to hear the gospel
- For the salvation of many and the listening ear of all who will hear
- For boldness, courage and kindness in talking to strangers about Christ
- For opportunity to connect them to the career missionaries & local churches
- That they will see the love of Christ through our efforts
- For the believers we will serve
- That they will be encouraged by the reinforcements
- That they are able to express the challenges they face so that we can better support their work
- That they will be well served by the efforts of the team
- That their needs will be met as a result of our service
- That they will recover quickly from the exhaustion of hosting our team
Overall, pray with us that God will be glorified, that Jesus Christ will be proclaimed, and that His Spirit will work mightily in the hearts of all who are involved.
Oh, my brothers and sisters in Christ, if sinners will be damned, at least let them leap to hell over our bodies; and if they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees, imploring them to stay, and not madly to destroy themselves. If hell must be filled, at least let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go there unwarned and unprayed for. (Spurgeon, C.H. 11).
For more information on SBTS mission teams please visit the Bevin Center’s webpage. To keep up with the mission teams on Twitter follow #SBTSmissions2015.
Jim Stitzinger serves as the associate vice president of Institutional Advancement and director of the Bevin Center for Missions Mobilization at Southern Seminary. Previously he has served as a church planter and pastor in SW Florida and as the pastor of local outreach and evangelism at Grace Community Church in Los Angeles, CA.