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It’s important for families to teach their children about missions. Training the next generation to have a heart for missions can help ensure that God’s word continues to spread. To help you build missionary awareness as a family, here are five simple things you can try.
1. Read Aloud Missionary Bios and Stories
God works in miraculous ways. And He is still showing Himself powerful on mission fields all around the world.
Take the time to read aloud missionary biographies and missionary stories in your home. Let your kids hear about God’s mighty work.
Learning about how God has provided for missionaries can also help children to trust that God can also provide for them. And you never know, God may use the stories of other missionaries to call your child into full-time service.
Here are a few of the missionary biographies we have really enjoyed throughout the years.
- Christian Heroes: Then and Now from YWAM Publishing (they have many titles available)
- Ten Girls Who Changed the World from Lightkeepers
- Ten Boys Who Changed the World from Lightkeepers
- Venturing with God in Congo by Darrell Champlin
- To the Golden Shore: The Life of Adoniram Judson by Courtney Anderson
There are many other options available. So pick up a biography and read it as a family. It’s a fun way to learn more about how God has been at work around the world.
2. Pray for Missionaries
Regularly pray for missionaries. Missionaries need your prayer support and greatly appreciate your faithful prayers.
Subscribe to their prayer newsletters. And then read them when they come.
Consider reading these updates aloud to your family, so everyone can learn more about the specific needs. Then, go to the Lord in prayer. Ask God to bless the missionaries and help them with their needs. Praise Him for answered prayers and souls saved.
You can also pray for missionaries in between their newsletters. Here’s a post with ten different ideas for how to pray for missionaries.
3. Collect and Display Prayer Cards
Most missionaries have prayer cards. If the missionaries presenting in your church have some available, take one. Then, use these prayer cards to create a missionary display in your home.
This can be simple or elaborate. The idea is to create a visual reminder in your home about missionaries. Here are some ideas:
- Hang up a world map and use a tack to mark each country you have prayer cards for
- Hang prayer cards around the map and connect a string to each card and the country it correlates with
- Place a simple bulletin board and attach prayer cards to it
- Purchase an album to put missionary cards in that you can flip through
- Punch a hole in the corner of each card and add them to a large key ring
Let your kids help set up this display, and then continue adding to it each time a new missionary visits your church. Then, you can use these prayer cards to help you remember to pray for each missionary.
Note: If you’d like us to send you a copy of our newest prayer card, please send us an email at: tanners2ma at gmail.com
4. Host Missionaries in Your Home
You can’t really get to know a missionary family with just a quick greeting between services at church. To really become acquainted with missionaries, consider inviting them into your home. Have them in for a meal, or host them while they are in town.
By interacting with the missionaries on a more personal level, you can really get the opportunity to talk. You can learn more about the ministry and their burden for it.
Your children will more likely remember this missionary after your hospitality. And, it’ll be a blessing for the missionary family.
Don’t worry, this experience doesn’t have to be flawless. You don’t have to cook a gourmet meal or have a spotless house. God doesn’t ask for perfect hospitality, just for us to be hospitable.
5. Join a Missionary’s Support Team
Missionaries cannot be on the field without support. And while some support comes from churches, individual donors are on the rise. If you feel a burden for a missionary family and their ministry, consider joining their financial team.
You can take them on as “your” missionaries. Your kids can learn more about their ministry, and know that they are having a part in the work there.
And don’t worry, you don’t have to give a lot of money to make a difference. Every donation helps keep the missionaries on the field. So feel free to start small and build up from there as you’re able.
If you aren’t able to take a missionary on for regular support, there are other ways to give. See if the missionary you want to help has any one-time financial needs. Perhaps they are working on building a new church building, or need to get tracts printed. If you’re able, help with these special fundraising efforts.
Make it a point to talk to your children about the support opportunities. Knowing that you support missionaries, and why it is important, may inspire them to do the same some day.
Raise Missionary Awareness
The goal of each of these activities is to help your family learn more about God’s work in missions. These are five things that our family has done, but they are not the only options. What other ways can you think of to help your family become more aware of missionaries? Please share your ideas in the comments.
And, if you’re looking for a missionary family to take on for support, we’d love to have your family join our team. You can learn more here: