What’s A Missionary?

Have you ever thought about what a missionary is? When Amy and I were on staff with Cru, we used to joke about how if we were “real” missionaries it would have been easier to raise support. We felt this way because there was a sense among many Christians that a “real” missionary is someone who goes overseas to suffer and to take the gospel to the “heathen”. We were serving on the college campus and definitely not suffering.

I used to think of a missionary as anyone who was in full time ministry and not a pastor. Missionaries, in my mind, were a special class of Christian. These people were on the “front lines” and were like the Marines of the Church.

Here’s the thing, I was dead wrong and so were the people who thought missionaries only go overseas.

A missionary is simply someone who is sent on a mission. The two key components are “mission” and “sent”. If this is the definition, then get this, every single follower of Jesus is a missionary.

This past Sunday we sent Bianca Waller to Kenya. She is going to represent Jesus there as she lives out her gifting as a nurse. It’s an amazing opportunity. God is certainly going to be glorified through her.

Even more beautiful is the fact that each and every one of us who follows Jesus is doing the very same thing. We may not be in Kenya but we are in our neighborhoods, workplaces, and schools. We have been sent with a mission.

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