Engaging with international missions through short-term opportunities
Written by Bethany Rivera, Interim Director of Mobilization
As I reflect on my journey with CMF, I often remember that I did not become engaged with God’s mission around the world right away. My journey has not been one from zero to sixty miles per hour. Instead, I see that seeds of understanding God’s mission were planted at a young age through meeting missionaries and hearing stories about global Kingdom work. But those stories and people were over there, and I was pursuing an education and career over here. During college, a mentored-ministry experience with CMF gave life to the idea that I could be a part of engaging with God’s mission myself through CMF. Perhaps more surprising to me was that I wanted to be a part of it! This was a life-altering change from the path I had been pursuing. Yet for myself and many others, a short-term experience led to a life-long passion for cross-cultural ministry.
CMF has many options to consider when it comes to short-term missions experiences. The first service opportunity with CMF is our REACH Internship program. For over thirty years, CMF has been sending teams of young adults to serve for 8-weeks each summer alongside long-term CMF ministries. Through a mentored and guided experience, interns are given the opportunity to come and learn about missions in a hands-on context. Interns are trained before they serve and are given space to process their experience and what God might be calling them to next after returning from the field.
The second service opportunity with CMF is our Exchange Semester program. As CMF began planting international campus ministries with Globalscope, the idea was born for young adults to study abroad while completing a semester-long internship with a Globalscope campus ministry. This part-ministry and part-educational approach allowed participants to gain tangible ministry experience while continuing their studies. Today, Exchange has grown to include semester-long opportunities not only on Globalscope fields, but also on Church Catalyst, or church planting, fields. Additionally, you can serve if you have already finished your degree and simply want an extended 4–6-month ministry experience.
The third service opportunity with CMF is our EQUIP Immersive Experience in Great Britain. With more than 170 different people groups in proximity, EQUIP is strategically located in Birmingham, England. Participants are offered the opportunity to serve for 10-months in an immersive program geared for disciple-making and working among unreached people groups. Seasoned church planters and disciple-makers with CMF guide and mentor the program with the hope of launching more church planters and more disciple-makers into every corner of the world.
Through each of these programs, CMF offers an invitation to others to “come and see.” With intentional mentorship and guidance, many have realized their ability to engage with God’s mission as I did through my own short-term experience with CMF. Consider this a formal invitation to come and see which service opportunity might be a starting point for you on the journey as a global Kingdom worker. You might be surprised, as I was, to discover a life-long passion waiting for you on the other side.