How many times have you participated in short-term mission (STM)? It is believed that most people can answer this question quickly. However, Flora, who has joined STM for thousand times and led STM for thousand times, finds this question difficult to answer. Flora is the leader of Middle East STM this year. She is also preparing to be a missionary in the Middle East.
Talking about the reason why Flora wants to go to the Middle East for long-term mission, she mentioned that she had always been touched to go to the place where the gospel is unreached. In 2012, she first heard about the sharing from the pastor and leader of the Middle East through CCMN Global Summit, and in 2014, she heard about the appearance of ISIS. She discovered that there were lots of needs. She said, “Although that place is so strange to me, I still hope to share with the people who do not have an opportunity to know God.” Besides, Flora finds one thing very profound. Once, a Middle East’s pastor shared the message of shinning for God in the darkest place. She was deeply moved by the message and it once again pushed her heart to go for long-term mission. She also wished to prepare herself through this Middle East STM and visit the mission field which she is going to serve, to understand their culture.
Yet, because of the visa problem, Middle East STM has changed the mission field. It changed from a place in the Middle East to another place in the Middle East. Flora could not go to the mission field she is going to serve in the future. Although she felt a bit disappointed after knowing that news, she knew God would lead the team. And when Flora was sharing with the teammates, all of them realized that changing mission field might be a good thing. “The number of people in our team has decreased from twelve to eight. It seems that there are fewer participants, but it makes us cherish the teammates who can set off together. I also felt grateful that the teammates who cannot go to the STM are willing to stay in the WhatsApp group and support us. They participated in the preparation work, it’s another way to serve.”