At the end of February, a team from our home church, Hope Chapel Maui, came to YWAM Mazatlan to build a home with our Homes of Hope ministry. While they were here, we realized that a team visiting from a missionary's home church can have a huge impact on both the missionaries and the church itself. Here are a few of the reasons I think every church should visit their YWAM missionaries.
1. It's a blessing to the missionaries on the field
When a home church sends a team to their missionaries, the missionaries get to spend quality time with old friends while meeting new people they may not have had the opportunity to connect with at church. Teams do not just bless their own missionaries, but the other long-term missionaries as well. That could mean hanging out over a cup of coffee, sitting and sharing your testimony with someone, or going out for tacos together. We see God work in our lives when we build and invest in relationships.
2. The impact that it has on the people who go
Watch the video above and you will hear how people are deeply affected by going on a missions trip. Some are most affected by experiencing a new country and encountering extreme poverty, while others are most affected by having the opportunity to serve. Many people come back from a missions trip talking about how it changed their life or how they will never be the same. God uses us to love those in need, and at the same time, He moves in our own hearts. When a church is able to visit one of their missionaries, it gives the congregation a powerful sense of familiarity with that specific country and that specific missionary. When they are able to serve in the ministry firsthand, it inspires the church to continue to offer their prayer, encouragement, and support.
3. Short term teams can have long term results
Short-term teams have long-term results. When a church team comes to partner with a long-term ministry, we are connecting the visiting church, the local missionaries, and the local church. As we come together in unity, God is in our midst, and we are able to accomplish more than we could do on our own. If teams never came to Mazatlan to help build homes with our Homes of Hope ministry, how many years would it take for our staff to raise all the money and build hundreds of homes ourselves? For ministries like Homes of Hope, we rely on short term teams to be a part of our long term results. Some may disagree with the impact short terms have, but we are truly thankful for the progress and relationships that have come out of teams like Hope Chapel Maui.
If you or your home church is interested in visiting a YWAM missionary, we encourage you to say yes to God and come witness the outpouring of His love on our lives and in the lives of those we serve. No matter who you are or where you're from, we welcome you to be a part of what God is doing in YWAM Mazatlan.