Nov 18, 2016 Missions at Grace – Families on Mission
One of the most popular questions I receive from those at Grace in regards to missions often comes from families. Let’s be honest for a moment…parenting children, no matter their age, creates limitations to many desires, even good ones. Families have a lot to do each day with driving kids to practices, school functions, packing lunches, etc. In the midst of all this, the question is often, “How can we be on mission as a family?”
This year our desire is that the people of Grace would befriend one international. What if we did this with one international family? We sometime complicate the Great Commission given in Matthew 28. In our western culture we tend to be too organized and too structured. However, when it comes to reaching the nations, it is often more simplistic.
Recently, this made more sense to me. A couple of weeks ago our neighborhood hosted a block party and on our street we have several families from India. At one point I looked around and noticed something. All these families were spending time with my children, holding them, making them laugh, and trying to pull them out of their shyness. Internationals in our city LOVE families. This is something I have watched and perceived over the years with those from other countries. It doesn’t matter how young or old, internationals enjoy being with families.
I know you may say, “It will be too hectic and crazy bringing my kids along!” I would encourage you to relax and realize that most internationals do not see it that way. They see it as home. Instead of thinking your family prevents you from entering into mission, see how it is a blessing to enter into relationships with those from around the world. Teach your children now how to be welcomers to people from distant lands for the sake of the gospel.
Director of Adult Discipleship & Missions
Ways to Engage Your Family in Missions
- Take your children on an international field trip in Nashville. Use our missions brochure to get ideas for places to visit. Let them experience different foods and see different cultures. Afterwards, read Matthew 28 and help them see the need for the gospel among the nations that are living in Nashville.
- Pray for a specific nation that has moved to Nashville (Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Somalia, etc.). Use this as a time to teach them about the country and its need for the gospel.
- Befriend a refugee family from World Relief and involve your children.
- Visit parks in areas of town that are frequented by internationals. Sometimes your kids will help you engage the nations.
- Go grocery shopping at stores near the Tusculum area and bring your kids. The Aldi store near the zoo is a great place to start.
- Find an international neighbor and have their family over for dinner. If you don’t think you have one, walk around your neighborhood and ask God to show you…chances are there are probably internationals in your own backyard.
- Make international food one night and pray for the country where the food comes from.
Feel free to contact Justin Tucker for more ideas.