I’m convinced there is nothing quite as life-changing as being on the mission field. Growing up in Southern California, my youth group went to an orphanage in Mexico multiple times a year. We built new dorms, we painted walls, we cleaned bathrooms, we washed load after load of laundry and hung them on the line to dry. We taught Bible stories, sang songs proclaiming His love, and brought gifts for kids who rarely received any.
But the biggest thing we really did was love on those children! Kicking around a soccer ball, giving piggyback rides, pushing the little ones on swings. The language barrier did nothing to silence the joy on their faces as new friendships were formed, love was poured out, and hope was born.
A love for missions is in my blood. My grandparents were missionaries for decades. My mom was born in Central America in the mission field. They served in Guatemala, the Philippines, the Gilbert Islands, Panama. For decades, they lived in foreign lands learning new languages and cultures, all for a chance to be the hands and feet of Jesus.
Being Jesus to people who might otherwise never meet Him is a huge honor and a humble responsibility. Take a look at Mother Teresa.
She devoted her life to serving those in need. She sacrificed everything to love the unloved and help heal a broken world. The large majority of her adult years were spent loving others, spending time with children, and spreading the hope of Jesus through her acts of service.
A journalist once asked Mother Teresa, after all her years of missions work and after all of the hurt and brokenness she has seen, what is the one thing people can do to change the world. Her answer? “Go home, and love your family.”
I’m going to repeat that answer because of how mind-blowing it is. The number one way to change the world is to go home and love your family!
This simple answer changed the way I viewed “mission work.” Don’t get me wrong! I still have a heart to go overseas and spread the gospel, but I’ve realized that you don’t have to travel thousands of miles to get to a mission field. My home IS a mission field.
God has given me two little disciples-in-the-making. He has chosen me to be their mama! I have the awesome task and humble responsibility to raise them in the ways of Jesus. To teach them how to fall in love with Him, to train them how to serve His people, and to empower them to make disciples of others.
May we never lose sight that motherhood is a mission field. No matter how young or old your children might be, no matter what season of motherhood you might be in right now, you are a missionary!
You are called to proclaim the gospel to your family TODAY! You are commanded to teach your children the ways of the Lord, to live His love and grace and mercy out loud, to model His unending grace and unconditional forgiveness in good days and in bad.
Whether you are overwhelmed with dirty diapers, bottle feedings and sleep schedules, or you have already helped your little flock grow up and leave the nest, the job of motherhood is never over. And most importantly, it matters. It matters SO much!
Never wish you were in a different stage of life so you could “give more” time to mission work, or “do more” to spread the gospel to the world. You, my friend, are on the front lines! You are spreading the gospel – with every decision you make, every conversation you have, every memory you make.
In spite of the piles of diapers and dishes, amidst the stacks of toys and textbooks, recognize your home for what it is. A mission field to share Christ’s love. A daily opportunity where you get to teach your little ones (or big ones!) about the beautiful love of Jesus and His ways.
Enjoy the days, relish the memories, and rejoice that what you do does matter. Never take for granted the role you play and the great responsibility the Lord has entrusted to you.