Ten Suggestions To More Effective Missionary Display Booths

SOURCE: By Butch Oglesby (Many of the suggestions in this article are
based on the book, “How To Get The Most Out of Trade Shows”, by Steve
Miller.) 31 Oct 2003

One of the many tasks of a furloughing missionary is to inform his or her stateside constituents about the work that God is doing where the missionary is serving. We do this not just to inform, but to encourage interest in and support for missions. Even those of us who serve in denominations that do not require us to raise our own support must encourage our supporters to pray for us and the people we are trying to reach. Naturally, we want them to become excited about missions and support our work financially, either directly or indirectly.

Speaking at churches and mission conferences is most often the venue for missionaries, and we are expected to have some sort of display and even dress in our national costume. Often these mission conferences take on the
feel of a trade fair. In fact they may best be thought of as missions fairs. In order to be as effective as we can possibly be it would be good for us to remember some simple and basic rules about one’s mission exhibit. Below a few suggestions and the dos and don’ts of manning your missionary display.

1. Make your display area open. People do not like to walk into a booth where they feel trapped. If you have a table, move it to the rear of the booth so the area feels open and inviting. Don’t be a border guard. That is, don’t stand in the way of your display.

2. Have as much interactivity as possible. If you have a laptop computer you can produce a continuous slide show in Power Point or other programs to encourage visitors to pause a few moments at your booth. People love to touch things; simple games from your country are always attention-getters.

3. Keep your exhibit area neat. People will move things and generally clutter your table. From time-to-time straighten up the clutter. If you have equipment or extra material you are not using at the moment, try to find an out-of-the-way place to store it where it is not visible.

4. Give something away: brochures, fact sheets, pencils, candy from your country; the list goes on. However, don’t give brochures to everyone. They are expensive, and research shows that 90% of them are thrown away before
the recipient reaches home. One researcher says that the average time spent reading a brochure is 1.3 seconds. So, be selective about giving away your slick, four-color brochures.

5. Don’t sit or read in your booth. This gives the impression you really don’t want to be bothered or that you are “off duty.” People will pass you by if you give them any reason to do so.

6. Don’t eat or drink at your booth. It is rude and messy; people are polite and will not bother you while you are eating.

7. Don’t chew gum or suck breath mints. It is not pleasant to talk to someone who has something in their mouth. If you feel you need a breath freshener, use a spray.

8. Don’t ignore those who wander into your booth. If you are busy with someone else, at least acknowledge the person or draw him or her into the conversation.

9. Don’t spend your time visiting with the other missionaries. You do not want to look too busy to spend time with a potential prayer warrior!

10. Wear your badge properly. It may seem more cool to wear it on your sleeve or waistband, but if you want people to read it, then it should be placed on your shirt or jacket wear it can be easily and quickly read.

These are only a few suggestions, but following them will help you stand out and be effective. After all, you want to give your people group the best representation possible.

Missionary Racism

Court cases, marches, protests, books, movies, and much more reveal how racist the world and society in which we live can really be. But sadly there is another kind of racism that exists, one we do not hear much about: missionary racism. This article is not intended to slam anyone and definitely not to make anyone think less of missions, rather its purpose is to help the missionary and missionary sender avoid racism.

Here are a few attitudes that show “racism” in the area of missions: Read More

Major Mistakes of a Missionary

  1. Going with a pastor mentality instead of a missionary or world evangelist mentality. That attitude means starting a church, pastoring the church, and developing it until we are proud of it.
  • Doing things that nationals cannot reproduce. Money that we invest, materials that we have
  • Not training nationals to do the job
  • Not trusting the nationals
  • Never developing a strategic plan to reach the city and country. (doing a piece meal work, no plan, no goals)
  • Turning our work over to a missionary instead of a national worker that we have trained
  • Getting a defeatist attitude (it won’t work here)

Read More

How To Pray For Your Missionary

By Will Cosby, Veteran missionary of 40 years.

  • Pray for him to understand the people he is working with, and for him to know why they do the things they do.
  • Pray for him to have great patience in dealing with delay.
  • Pray that God will give him wisdom in making daily decisions.  Even a small mistake will magnify in days to come.
  • Pray that God will garrison his mind against evil thoughts.
  • Pray for him to have Holy Spirit power and a good influence on others.
  • Pray that others will de-magnify his imperfections.
  • Pray for his spiritual health to be good and his physical health to keep pace with it.
  • Pray for him to receive much benefit from his Bible study; first for himself, and then for others.
  • Pray that God will help him to be flexible without compromise, and steadfast without being rigid.
  • Pray for him to be able to deliver his sermons with great satisfaction to God, the people, and himself.
  • Pray that God will keep him from believing false information and to be able to discern it as such.
  • Pray that he will know how to arrange his daily schedule with proper spiritual priorities.
  • Pray for him to give the proper attention to his wife and family and not to neglect them for the work.
  • Pay for him to be ever conscious of souls in need and to be aware of opportunities to win them.
  • Pray for him to have an ever increasing and widening vision of his work.
  • Pray for him to love his people as a shepherd does his sheep and to know their individual needs and be able to administrate his work for the benefit of the whole body.
  • Pray that he will have great faith in God to achieve the impossible.
  • Pray for him not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think and that God will shrink his ego.
  • Pray for him to have great boldness to preach the Word without fear or favor of man.
  • Pray for him to have good convictions and not to compromise.
  • Pray for him that most of all, he will love God supremely with all his heart, mind and soul.

Excuses for not being a Missionary

  1. “But I’m not called”

You don’t know how many people I’ve met who have said to me “I agree that more people need to go to the mission field, but I’ve never heard God tell me to go.”

Well, the truth is that God has already told you to go in His Word. In fact, He commands you to go… “Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15) That’s right… YOU ARE CALLED!

In fact, if you don’t go, you need a specific calling from God to stay home. Has God definitely told you not to “go” somewhere outside your country to preach the Gospel? If He hasn’t, then you’d better start praying WHERE to go, instead of IF you should go – for again, you’re already called!

  1. “But God needs people to stay here to be a witness to those lost in America. There’s enough need right here!”

It is true that God has called some people to stay right where they are to be witnesses for Jesus in their daily lives and professions. But again, God is merciful and just. Since America has only about 5% of the world’s population, then only about 5% of the believers would really be called to stay in this country as a witness ( that’s only about 1 out of 20) while the rest of us should go into the parts of the world where there are almost 0% believers. (In Albania, for instance, there are only “a handful” of known believers in the whole country of 2.7 million people – less than 1/2 of 1/1000th percent!!) Read More

What is the Missionary’s Job? (Acts 14)

Message Preach by Randy Stirewalt (Notes by Jeff Bush)

We have many ideas of what missions is, but it should be based on what Bible says

1. Preached the Gospel – vs. 21

Before being a missionary, I am a preacher, a preacher of the Gospel.
Wherever he went, he preached and lives were changed – and it should center around a local church.

2. Taught Many – vs. 21-22

They set up a teaching ministry immediately – a discipleship of the believers.
Paul and Barnabus taught many – they won them and then taught them so they would know how to grow in the grace of Christ.
We may win people to the Lord, but we must disciple them and see the pattern continue as they disciple others.
Taught them (vs. 21) and confirmed them (vs. 22) Read More