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Cultivating Your Church’s Heart for Global Ministry

Cultivating Your Church’s Heart for Global Ministry

Just as bringing the gospel to the least-reached requires intentional effort, seeing members of your church gain a growing heart for the nations requires deliberately engaging them with the needs of the least-reached and ways to be involved. It doesn’t just happen by accident! But, through purposeful prayer, proclaiming biblical truth, demonstrating the urgency of the task and presenting opportunities, you can cultivate a heart for global ministry among members of your fellowship.

Local churches are global extensions of the Body of Christ, and they are the central component through which Christ-honoring transformation takes place. United under the authority of Christ, believers grow in maturity, wisdom and dependence upon the Holy Spirit to accomplish the missiological calling of the global Church. The Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20, NIV) is inseparable from the role of the Church and the calling of all believers. No one is exempt from this commandment! We are all called to make disciples of all nations.

The Great Commission is both an individual and collective effort, and there is more than one way to participate in it. Every church—and every single believer—has a part to play in heeding Christ’s call to make disciples among the least-reached. So, what are practical ways you can cultivate a heart for global ministry within your congregation?

Pray.

At the end of the day, cultivating a heart for global ministry isn’t about programs, but about prayer. Prayer is God’s primary tool for giving His people a heart for the nations. As members of your church bring the needs of the least-reached and the workers serving among them before the Lord, they gain understanding of what is required to bring the gospel to these people and become personally invested in seeing them come to know and worship Jesus. Here are a few key tips to reinforce the importance of prayer for missions in your congregation:

  • On Sunday mornings, “Ask the Lord of the harvest … to send out workers” (Matthew 9:38, NIV) from your church.
  • Let your congregation know what is happening in the lives of workers your church supports and invite them to pray regularly for these workers’ needs.
  • Challenge your church members to make prayer for the least-reached a more central part of their prayer life.
  • Devote 15 minutes of some meetings and gatherings to pray for specific needs of workers as well as for least-reached individuals and groups, both domestically and abroad.
  • Begin praying together through “Operation World” by Jason Mandryk.

Preach.

Make the mandate to bring the gospel to all nations (Revelation 7:9, NIV) prominent from the pulpit. Seeing all peoples reached with the good news of Jesus is a central theme of God’s grand redemptive story throughout the Scriptures. When it’s a priority in your church’s teaching, members can catch a vision for His heart for all nations and realize that involvement in ministry to the least-reached isn’t an obligation, but rather an overflow of His compassion for humanity working through us!

  • At least one Sunday a quarter, preach on the biblical foundation of global ministry.
  • From the pulpit, challenge members of your congregation to seek God’s direction in embracing their unique roles in the global ministry efforts of the church.
  • Offer small group studies or Sunday school classes on missions-focused topics.

Prioritize.

Demonstrate the importance of reaching the nations for Christ by making involvement in ministry among them a key part of your church’s activities and budget. By emphasizing the needs of the least-reached through the priorities of your fellowship as a whole, you can help individual members of your congregation see these needs as a priority as well.

  • Initiate a designated giving program in your church to fund global missions.
  • Devote a significant percentage of your ministry budget to reaching least-reached people groups.
  • Share how God is using the workers your church supports and invite members to personally get involved their ministry.
  • Seek opportunities to minister among least-reached people groups in your local community.
  • Contact Christar (and other organizations) to learn about the least-reached people groups that they are invested in.
  • Consider partnering with Christar to reach these groups with personnel and resources.

Promote.

Encourage members of your church to participate in cross-cultural ministry by presenting ways to learn about missions and be personally involved. Find ways to reach out to least-reached people in your area and plan opportunities to be involved overseas. Remember, a passion for global ministry is caught more than taught!

  • Feature a global missions fair once or twice a year involving the church’s youth.
  • Challenge your congregation, especially young people, to read and discuss worker biographies.
  • Invite a Christar representative to do a presentation on least-reached groups or current cross-cultural trends.
  • Read and distribute Joshua Project’s list of 100 Largest Unreached People Groups.
  • Invite a partner mission agency to coordinate a global ministry weekend at your church.
  • Host a Perspectives course in your church and invite others in the area to attend.
  • Plan short-term trips that give church members a taste of long-term cross-cultural ministry.

The importance of the local church and its role cannot be understated! As churches help their members mature in faith and gain awareness of the needs of the least-reached, congregations will grow in Christlikeness and in their desire to share the truth, love, grace and hope that God has revealed to them with people who have never heard this good news. Through your fellowship’s intentional efforts, you can give your members a passion to bless the nations as God has blessed them!

If you are interested in learning more about how churches can participate in the Great Commission, or how Christar’s Church Partnership Team comes alongside churches to offer support and practical training, you can read more here. You can also contact a member of our Church Partnership Team directly using this form.

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