Every week, we share stories about the amazing ways God is at work around the world. We hope that you’ll be encouraged by these stories and inspired to greater involvement in God’s Great Commission to go out to the world – near and far – and train, instruct, and baptize people in Jesus’ Name. This week, we start out by hearing from Pastor Tom Totter of LifeBridge Church who shares how his experience has impacted his home church:
It’s a real blessing to partner with E3. Our church is a small-to-medium-sized church and would love to be larger, but even the largest of churches, as we go to do these things, can always use the help and the expertise that is brought to bear by an organization like E3.
Putting a team on the field, in sometimes challenging situations, is not a simple thing. I’ve found, as we’ve done many of these now, that the key ingredient to a successful missions trip (of course, other than the covering of God) is who you partner with as you go into a foreign country. One thing that E3 brings to the table in a bountiful way is a team of people in each of the countries they go to that are local experts in their respective regions.
And, I love E3’s model that doesn’t operate instead of the Church, but through the Church, on both sides of the trip. Here in the United States, the ideal is for a church to mobilize a team and go. But then, when they arrive at their destination, there is often a group from a local church waiting for them to carry out God’s work. That is an expertise and an ability that is hard to do on your own, even if you are a big church.
Too often, churches think that they can just wing it, or do missions trips their own way. Yet, time and time again, I have seen God abundantly bless teams who work with the locals who have already been vetted, who know the region’s needs and are simply prepared to do the unique things that need to be done in that area. Working with local churches help us work out of a servant posture of “How can we help work through you in making a difference for the Lord in your community?”
Now, I am always blessed when I am able to personally bring the Gospel to someone. It’s an amazing experience and I am not worthy of it, except through God’s allowance. But, as a pastor – as someone charged with the Ephesians 4 challenge of equipping others to do God’s work – it is even more exciting to see people who have never shared the Word, and then – by the blessing of God – are able to see fruit from seeds planted right then and there. I have been able to see this take place, in large part, thanks to E3’s training program.
Secondly, I think that a lot of reluctance that people have against going on a missions trip stems from fear. Specifically, more than ever, I see people look at dollar figures and are afraid to go simply because of the financial cost of the trip. But, thanks to E3’s partnerships, tools and training, the financial burdens, as well as other hurdles are often easily wiped away.
If you would like to find out more about partnering with E3 and expanding God’s kingdom across the globe, visit www.e3expeditions.org. They go to over 40 different countries and, as Tom said, they take care of so much of the little obstacles that seem to large to overcome in spreading God’s word across the globe.