When Visitors Visit the Missionary on the Field

When I served as a missionary, having visitors (family, home church, youth group or just a single or couple individuals) was a blessing, but it was also a lot of work. My goal in this short article is to give a few ideas and suggestions as you host guests. Having a plan will help the time together and influence someone for the cause of Christ.

  1. Write out a planned schedule. This plan will be your roadmap during your visitor’s stay.
    1. Take them to the highest points of the city. Let them take pictures of the city and talk to them about how they are like sheep without a shepherd, a people in need of the Gospel.
    1. Give a gift basket when your guests arrive. For a large group, just have a basket for the leaders.  Bottled water in the basket is always appreciated.
    1. Give them your address and phone number (as well that of your wife’s or any pastor/leader you work with) so they can easily contact you or find their way back if separated from the group.
    1. Rent a vehicle (possibly a bus) if there are several people so that you can easily get around together. You can figure the cost in what the group pays while visiting you.
    1. Take them to religious temples (Hindu, Buddhist, Catholic, etc.). Talk to them about the spiritual condition of your country and allow them to see it first hand.
    1. Take them to poor areas in the city and see the poverty, and talk about the spiritual poverty that abounds.
    1. Go to where large crowds of people are and let them pass out Gospel tracts.
    1. Make sure they’re comfortable. Do they have food allergies? Is it going to be hot or cold while they are there? Find out their needs and/or wants. Remember that if they are not comfortable, they are not as likely to listen to you when you challenge them nor will they like your country (because of a rough experience).
    1. 10.Let your visitors give testimonies, sing specials and preach when they visit your church(es). Do not do everything yourself in the church service, let them get involved. When they are involved instead of just watching, it makes their visit all the more greater.
    1. 11.Take them to see the lights of the city at night and talk to them about how each light represents several souls that are in need of Christ.
    1. 12.Find out the tourist attractions in your area and take them there, using each one as a preaching point. Let them see the history of your country, spiritual state of the country and culture of your country. Let them buy souvenirs to take back.
    1. 13.Take them to a cemetery, show them graves and dates in which people died and then ask them where they think all of the people are now.  Know when the Gospel first arrived to the country and how many people before that didn’t have much of a chance to hear the Gospel.
    1. 14.Make it your goal to preach, teach, motivate and show the obvious need while they are visiting you.  No one should visit your field without seeing the need and feeling the burden to be a missionary, or at the least being challenged to do more in missions.
    1. 15.Let them try food from your country, but mainly give them food that will not upset their stomach and make them sick. Just give them a taste of the food from your country and then take them to restaurants or make food at home that they are familiar with. Everyone likes adventure, but in small quantities.
    1. 16.Let your local church people give their testimonies and translate it for the visitors so that they can see what God is doing. If you have young men training for ministry (or pastors), let them preach to the visitors; this can be very powerful.
    1. 17.Give them tours and explain both the religion and culture of your country.  Let them observe the people at religious institutions. Why do the people have a red dot on their forehead? Why do they bow down to idols? Why do they have ribbons on their vehicles? Why do they have a call to prayer? Why do they dress in a certain way? Remember that what you are now accustomed to is very foreign to your visitors so be sure to explain all of it.
    1. 18.Make sure the hotel (or guest house or wherever you put the visitors) is nice. It does not have to be luxurious, but you do not want to scare them or make it where they do not enjoy their visit (this will give them a bad concept of the country, the people and of you as a missionary).
    1. 19.Have a devotional time in the morning and evening as a group. Be sure to give challenges and talk to them about the need all throughout the day.
    1. 20.Let them participate in ministry. Let the leaders teach your church people and especially those you’re training for ministry.
    1. 21.Do activities that people like and will remember. What do you want them to remember from their trip/visit? You don’t want them bored because you do not have anything planned but you don’t want to have them out every hour to where they will not listen when you challenge them either. Ask yourself what you want them to remember from their visit, and keep this in mind when you plan every activity.
    1. 22.Map out and take them to all the Gospel preaching churches in the city. Tell them how many people attend each church and then compare it to the great need in the country. Show them the churches verses the population. Lay out a map and let them look at it and pray over it. They should leave with a burden for your country and for the world.


by Jeffrey Bush

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