Running the race at home and abroad

“Short-term mission feels like running a race,” shared Shannon, who completed a marathon in her hometown, Belfast, to raise funds for OM’s ministries in Greece.  She sees many similarities between this fundraising race and the month she spent volunteering with OM in Greece. “In some ways short-term missions is a sprint because it flies by and you want to do as much as possible in a short time,” the Northern Irish student described. “It is also like a marathon that requires endurance and perseverance when it seems there are miles ahead with so many more people to reach.”

In the summer of 2019, Shannon joined OM workers and local churches to help with their ministries among refugees in Athens. Shannon and other volunteers prepared meals, distributed clothes, offered children’s programmes and taught English.

“Refugees fleeing unimaginable circumstances have complex needs and there aren’t quick fixes,” Shannon explained. “Therefore, we often complemented the ongoing work of long-term staff by serving in practical ways.” The volunteers sought to demonstrate God’s love through their actions, since it was not appropriate to talk openly about Jesus in some places. However, several refugees stopped to ask why they had come, giving them the chance to voice the reason for their love.

“One of the biggest lessons I learned was that meeting physical needs can point individuals towards their spiritual needs,” reflected Shannon. “I saw how the practical love of God through His people touches lives.”

Witnessing how simple gestures make a significant difference, inspires Shannon in living out her faith in Northern Ireland. Shannon returned, challenged to love others as God has loved her and look to their interests, even when it involves sacrificing possessions or time. “Inviting international students over for dinner and welcoming them by pursuing genuine friendships is so valuable,” she considered. “I have seen how these actions can be transformative in the lives of friends who are far from home.”

Shannon went to Athens despite doubts of being useful and fears of going alone. She found that God is looking for a willing heart and experienced His care for her. “God runs alongside us and strengthens us,” she expressed. “He gives us supporters in our race to spur us on in missions, much like my family who encouraged me while I ran the marathon. Whether through words, actions or prayer, we can always be supporting one another in our efforts to make Jesus known around the world.”

“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” – Philippians 2:4 (ESV)

Share this Resource

Leave a Reply

You might also like:

Bookshop Assistant Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAssistant at a freedom business that helps victims of trafficking with employment and life-skills training.
Full Details
Project Manager – Refugees Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleManage the project to support and bless refugees in the Athens area!
Full Details
IT Manager Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleUse your IT skills to help keep OM Greece running effectively!
Full Details
Journalist Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAs a journalist with OM, you would serve OM offices around the world by writing stories for the purposes of advocacy, recruiting, financial development, education, awareness and prayer. The position involves producing insightful and engaging content of ministry, culture and people that will be used in print and online publications. The writer will accurately and creatively document how God is working through OM, while encouraging audience engagement with OM through praying for, giving to, or joining missions. OM journalists share stories of God’s work through OM that align with OM’s writing guidelines in a culturally sensitive way. Additionally, participation in local ministry and team life may also be aspects of your role.
Full Details
People Care Person Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleSupport the team in Athens as they minister to the community around them!
Full Details
Short-term coordinator Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleHelp short-term teams and individuals find their place on the field where they can bless others and be inspired themselves.
Full Details
Administrator Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAcross OM, we have a strong need for individuals gifted in administration to aid ministry taking place on the mission field. Those with administrative skills are needed in almost every facet of ministry to ensure that outreaches, meetings and programmes operate with efficiency, and that tasks, paperwork and coordination involved in organising people and events is accomplished with completeness and attention to detail. If this describes how God has wired you, consider here how you can use your administrative gifts to see more vibrant communities of Jesus followers established among the least reached.
Full Details
Social Media Specialist Greece    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAs a social media specialist with OM, you would be responsible for overseeing OM’s social media strategy across platforms pertaining to the ministry. The position involves developing new and fresh content that encourages audience engagement and expansion, while ensuring that OM’s social broadcasting communicates a streamlined message that coincides with OM’s international branding. Social media specialists also provide consultation to OM workers and participate in launching, monitoring and engaging in the online conversation regarding OM events and marketing campaigns. Additionally, participation in local ministry and team life may also be aspects of your role.
Full Details