Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He left His followers with one command – go and make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18-20). While we can and should share the gospel with people in our local community, more than 40 percent of the world’s population has little or no opportunity to hear the good news of Jesus. 

  • 3.14 billion people have never heard the name of Jesus. 
  • Over 7,400 people groups are considered unreached. (Joshua Project)
  • 86% of all unreached people groups lie within the region called the 10/40 window, which is between 10 and 40 degrees north and from the west coast of Africa to the east coast of Asia. (Joshua Project)

Not everyone has to cross an ocean to share the gospel, and you can be a part of overseas missions no matter where you are. Here are five ways you can get involved with overseas missions at Southwest!

1. Pray

Prayer should be our number one tool we use whenever we seek to support overseas missions. Here are a few ideas of what you can pray for: 

  • Pray for boldness and strength for missionaries in the field. 
  • Pray for protection for Christians living under threat of persecution.
  • Pray for unreached people groups. 
  • Pray for open doors and opportunities for the gospel to be shared. 

If you support any missionaries in the mission field, they may also share specific names and situations that you can pray over!

2. Give

Missionaries primarily rely on donations and support from friends, families, and church congregations. But missions giving only accounts for 6.4% of the funds given to Christian causes of any kind. In 2001, a study found that only 1% of missions giving went to working with unreached people groups. At Southwest, our Global Outreach (GO Fund) helps people go and make a difference in Jesus’s name. You can also directly support missionaries on the field, or give to a missions organization that helps people go and share the gospel.

3. Go on a short-term mission trip

Short-term mission trips can be a great way to get a first-hand look at overseas missions. God may use a short-term trip to spark a greater desire for you to engage in full-time mission work! But even if that doesn’t happen, you’ll return from your trip with a broader perspective on how mission work actually happens, as well as what sharing the gospel looks like in a different cultural context.

4. Stay in contact

Since mission work happens so far from us, it can be easy to lose sight of the people behind it. Missionaries can often feel lonely and isolated from their home churches, family, and friends, and a few simple words of encouragement can mean the world to them. Even a quick email or Zoom call is a practical way to let missionaries know you’re thinking of them.

5. Share the gospel

We are blessed to live in a country where we can share the gospel freely without fearing for our lives. This isn’t the case for many missionaries serving overseas, or the Christians they work with. Take advantage of the freedoms we have in the United States, and share the gospel right where you are! 

Whether you’re serving in our community or feel the call to go serve overseas, you can be a part of fulfilling the Great Commission. Want to learn more about overseas missions at Southwest Community Church? Visit our Outreach page to find out how you can get involved!

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