Short-term missions in the Muslim world, long-term mindset

By January 9, 2017

International (MNN) — If you’re looking to go on a mission trip this year, you’ll want to check this out. Frontiers USA is accepting applications for their 2017 short-term missions trips and internship opportunities, and there are a variety of possibilities!

They have seven different trips open right now ranging from one-week long to internships that can go up to a year. Click here to check out all the listings.

(Photo courtesy of Frontiers USA via Facebook)

(Photo courtesy of Frontiers USA via Facebook)

Teresa Gibson, Director of Short-Term Missions with Frontiers, shares the heartbeat behind these outreaches. “For you to get the heart of Jesus and the view of the lost and the eyes of what God sees out there among the over 1,000 unengaged people groups. That’s why we do it.

“Then there’s the other fact of just encouraging missionaries and encouraging people who are there long-term. So that’s part of it too.”

One opportunity they have is coming up this summer in Sicily. “There are loads of asylum seekers and Muslim refugees in Sicily, and we’re sending three teams over for a week just to make friends and to share stories and to hear the refugee and asylum seekers’ stories and hopefully, with the local workers there, do some discovery Bible studies,” says Gibson.

“Then we have a couple of opportunities in India. One is working at a new language school, and that is a two-week trip. I’ll actually personally be leading that trip.”

There’s also a leadership group experience in India if you’re interested in getting experience to head a trip with your own church or some other group — or if you’d like to learn more about long-term missions for Christ on the field.

(Photo courtesy of Frontiers USA)

(Photo courtesy of Frontiers USA)

“We have in the Middle East an opportunity to go to Arabic language school in the morning, and then in the afternoon you work with refugees in a country in the Middle East [for two months]. So that has kind of both elements to it — it has the language and culture learning and it also has working with where some of the felt needs of the world are right now,” Gibson shares.

“In northwest Africa, we have a medical short-term [trip] that’ll be two-weeks long, but it also can be extended, and that’s working in a hospital. You need some medical background for that, but we’ve had really nice reports of folks who’ve gone on that, interns and med students being able to really practice there.”

There’s a two-fold purpose to these short-term mission trips with Frontiers — to spur life-long missional passion, both on the field long-term or in your own community.

“What we’ve found over the years is there are some people who already know they’re going to do that (go into long-term missions), but want to go on a vision trip, want to go see what the ethos of our organization is, what it’s like to make friends and have relationships with Muslims and to do discovery Bible studies and to just get a vision for what city or what country they’ll go to. So in that aspect, that’s for someone who’s already considering long-term missions.”

Serving Muslims in the name of Jesus Christ is what Frontiers USA is all about, and the focus of these outreaches has a deep spiritual impact, both on those being served and those serving.

Gibson shares, “I have story after story…. Even just as recently as last year, we had a young man go to the Middle East and learn Arabic and serve refugees and he’s all in. He’s already saying, ‘Okay, I’m going to go back for a longer internship this year,’ and then he’s going to go ahead and fill out the long-term process.

“We had another young lady go to the Gulf a few years ago on a two-week trip just to taste and see and meet with the missionaries there. She loved it and she went back for a two-month internship the next year, and now she’s actually on the field in a very closed Muslim country serving with the team there.”

(Photo courtesy of Open Doors USA)

(Photo courtesy of Open Doors USA)

Ultimately, Gibson says it comes down to this: “Hopefully, what we believe is…just having that heart for people who don’t know Jesus will just expand and grow, and it’ll allow people to spend the rest of their lives — whether they’re goers or senders or with another agency — to increase in that.

“For the individual, that’s what we really want is to provide an opportunity for God to work on the vision of serving Muslims.”

Interested in learning more?

Gibson advises, “Go online to findyourfrontier.org and it’s just a form [to fill out] and I will personally get back to you!”

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