Panama 2024 Recap

I joined a team of sixteen from our church to take the gospel to Panama. It was wondrous to see seasoned missionaries dig deeper and first-timers step outside their comfort zones with no desire to return to what is comfortable.

While there is so much to share, I will try to provide some brief highlights.

  1. IMB Trips — We joined a trip organized by International Mission Board missionaries. In the midst of much confusion with Baptists these days, I am energized by what this organization continues to do.
  2. Starter Trips — While our trip was not the easiest or the most comfortable, it did provide a wonderful first-time experience for many. By taking a short flight, without the need to exchange currency or purchase voltage adapters, people curious about missions could be enveloped in the opportunity without being overwhelmed by it.
  3. The Big “C” Church—For our weeklong assignment, we partnered with Prince of Peace Church in St. Louis. It was wonderful for the two churches to align and serve as a lifelong family.
  4. Multilingual Options—We took native English and Spanish speakers on the trip, and it makes me want to investigate that possibility further in the future. I desire to mobilize all people from our church to reach all people in the world.
  5. Multigenerational Trips — This trip was our first offering in a while encouraging high schoolers to go, and they loved the fact that it was multigenerational. Our youngest was 15 and our oldest was 79, and I loved watching them all serve together. We miss something important when we isolate generations from one another in the church.
  6. Missionary Support—While I met some new missionary friends and connected with some existing relationships, it reminded me of the great need to support those on the field. I loved watching our team encourage those serving and figure out ways to connect once home.
  7. Mobilizing Role—As the team leader, it was incredible to watch our team members shine once I got out of their way. My role was to set them up to the plate, and I was encouraged every time they did.
  8. Parenting Missionaries—I signed up for this opportunity because my sons wanted to go on their first international trip. My trip was complete as I watched one son share the story I had in my back pocket if no one stepped up (and saw him do it better than I could), and the other paid for a haircut so he could share the gospel and his whole story with his barber.
  9. Bus Tickets—We got bus tickets to stand up and preach to the people on them. This experience opened my eyes to opportunities I have even at home.
  10. Gospel Confidence — The more opportunities I have to share the gospel, the more convinced I am that it still has the power to save. I will spend my life getting this Word out and taking whoever will go along with me in the process.