by Will Rogers
So, you’re ready to take a medical mission trip. What questions should you ask yourself in order to be ready?
According to Mission of Hope, an exhibitor at this year’s GMHC, a medical mission trip is a powerful way to utilize your acquired skill set to help people in need. It is the opportunity to not only treat patients but also get to know them and pray for them. Medical mission trips take many forms, from medical to surgical to dental and nursing opportunities.
Anyone in any healthcare field can go on a mission trip. Whether your experience is vast or you’re just starting out, there is a place for you. Some organizations offer dental trips, others offer surgical services, some trips involve working with local hospitals or clinics, and other trips are designed for the allied health field.
If you are a student, there are trips that are designed just for you. There are also opportunities to work alongside trained and experienced doctors and nurses so that you can learn from them.
There are many ways to find a good medical mission trip. Here on MedicalMissions.com, we offer a comprehensive list of short-term trips hosted by organizations that are part of our community. You can also link directly to those organizations by visiting their profiles on MedicalMissions.com.
You want to be sure you are going with a group or organization that has been vetted and will provide an ethical, logistically sound trip. That is why we recommend starting with Medical Missions because all of our organizations have been approved to join the community by our staff team.
The world is a big place and the need for medical mission trips is literally never-ending. Many rural and urban locations in America urgently need healthcare services, and there are organizations that are tackling that disparity. Christ Community Health Services, Lawndale Christian Health Center, Esperanza Health Center, Christian Community Health Fellowship, and the Christian Health Service Corps are just a few of the organizations in our community that are doing outstanding work here in the US.
And then, of course, you can always look at overseas medical mission trips, and the possibilities are endless. You can search based on location, medical specialty, or healthcare interest. No matter where you end up, the goal is to use your skills in a way that honors those you go to serve!
Often, you can easily get caught up in the questions, details, planning, logistics, and other things related to a mission trip—and honestly—you can forget to pray. What should you pray as you’re considering a medical mission trip? Here are just a few ideas:
Pray for wisdom and grace. Something will go wrong. It doesn’t matter how organized you are! Pray from day one fo planning about everything we’ve listed in this post post. Ask God to give you wisdom in where you should go, how much money you should spend, who you should go on a mission with, and what you think God would have you accomplish on this trip. Rember this, when you are weak, and you will be, God is strong. His grace is sufficient for you now and on the trip. Learn early and often to get your strength from Him and you will be well on your way to having a mission trip of purpose and usefulness.
Pray for the group you’re going on a mission with. Whether you’re going on a mission trip with a medical group or a church group. Where feasible, get a list of people going on a mission with you and pray for them. Pray for the people you will be serving. Pray for understanding and for your heart to be open to God’s leading.
Pray for joy and peace. This is an amazing time to see God show up and see fruit in your life and for those going on a mission with you. Pray for the folks going with you to find joy and peace through this experience.
Pray for any concerns about the people you’re going to serve. Whether it’s financial frustrations or health questions, ask God for His provision daily from start to finish of your trip. Ask for spiritual eyes to see God at work in you and the folks on your trip.
Ask God to intervene and heal where there is sickness or other needs of the people you are going to serve. If you can, make a list of the needs people you’re traveling to serve and begin praying for those needs before you arrive. Keep a journal of frustrations and answers to prayer. When you look back over this experience, you’ll see trends where God was at work—if you’re looking.
So, you see, with asking yourself these five (5) questions, you’ll be well on your way to follow God’s leading and feel confident knowing you are not only doing the right thing, but you are leading others around you by how you model Christ through the entire process—both to the people you’re going on a mission with and the people you’re going to serve.