Chris Lautsbaugh

America, Meet the World

by Chris Lautsbaugh on March 18, 2016

6806119084_5e19d6100d

Hello America. Meet the Rest of the World. Note: This is not a political post but one of identification. The closer we get to the election in the United States, the more comments, eye rolling, and jokes I am hearing as an American living overseas. My journey as an American in missions has spanned over […]

{ 5 comments }

I Believe, Help My Unbelief

by Chris Lautsbaugh on December 30, 2015

photo-1431975562098-bac8ded504c7

In work, ministry, and life we all experience frequent seasons when things don’t work out quite the way we had hoped. In missions, our internal dialogues consist of “Am I making a difference?” or “Will these things ever change?” When we are trusting for provision, for a breakthrough in our health, or seeing a life […]

{ 4 comments }

People are not our Project

by Chris Lautsbaugh on September 30, 2015

photo-1437623889155-075d40e2e59f

As a zealous, young missionary I seemed to make  the same mistake over and over. Now as a veteran, I find the same never-ending truth must remain continually before me. People are not our projects.   We never set out to do this intentionally. Our mistakes are made in ignorance. Our desire is to do good, […]

{ 4 comments }

5 Thoughts for the Local Church

by Chris Lautsbaugh on June 17, 2015

12310052585_a53637c57e

The local church and missionaries on the field should be on the same team, but often a wedge of misunderstanding is driven between the two. There is a danger when missionaries feel entitled to the support of a local body. Many dig their own grave in destroying relationships with their sending churches. Equally, misunderstanding can come […]

{ 6 comments }

They Are Not Ready…

by Chris Lautsbaugh on May 20, 2015

716932931_a79e7a8d08

“They are not ready…” These may be some of the most frequently uttered words when missionaries consider passing the baton of leadership. They can also be the most painful. One of the leaders I work with shares the story of being a young, oppressed worker in South Africa during the time of apartheid: A white […]

{ 9 comments }

Forgiveness After Genocide

by Chris Lautsbaugh on April 20, 2015

5857007586_f356019023

“Ongoing Forgiveness is key to the Development of a Nation, Overcoming Horrors of the Past.” I recently spent some time in Rwanda. Both Rwanda and my home nation of South Africa had history altering events happen twenty years ago. The Rwandan genocide saw two tribes kill over one million people in just a few short […]

{ 2 comments }

The Language of Sport

by Chris Lautsbaugh on March 26, 2015

2837205988_c342baace0

Language study is one of the hardest and most time-consuming efforts missionaries make. There is, however, a language which is common to the world and far easier to learn. This is the language of sport. When my family arrived in South Africa as lovers of sport, we missed a trip to the Super Bowl by […]

{ 1 comment }

Money Gives us Power over People

by Chris Lautsbaugh on February 24, 2015

3364628930_418691df39

Last month at A Life Overseas, we discussed the dangerous stories we can tell in order to raise funds. This requires further consideration if we provide funds, pay national workers, or are just generous in any way. While the debate on this one is hot and heavy, I doubt we can make absolute statements. “Always […]

{ 5 comments }

Dangerous Stories

by Chris Lautsbaugh on January 22, 2015

medium_365092330

Sometimes the stories we tell of those we minister to can become dangerous. I’ve been at this missions thing for 23 years now. I’ve made a lot of mistakes. I often reflect on things I did in the past and cringe. Hindsight is always 20/20, but perhaps others can learn from my mistakes. One mistake […]

{ 21 comments }

Missions Field or Land of Opportunity?

by Chris Lautsbaugh on December 29, 2014

medium_5003536352

One man’s mission field is another’s land of opportunity. I realized this in a fresh way as I was interacting with some immigrants to South Africa from Malawi. They were telling me about their home nation, Malawi. The common descriptions were of a lush, green, and beautiful nation which was peaceful. They left their homeland […]

{ 0 comments }

Do We Practice What We Preach?

by Chris Lautsbaugh on November 26, 2014

south+african+police+service+saps+xgold+june

The other week, I made a trip to the local police station to get an affidavit. In South Africa, this is the venue you head to make a document “official”. The officer who helped me chatted with me a bit. He inquired how long I’d been in the nation and where I stayed. Finally he asked […]

{ 3 comments }

Avoiding Mission Drift

by Chris Lautsbaugh on October 29, 2014

medium_12592430574

We’ve seen Christian organizations publicly wrestle with change in recent times. InterVarsity is facing this pressure to allow non-Christians to be a part of their leadership. This is resulting in them being banned from certain campuses. Will they change some of their core values? World Vision battled with adopting new policies, leading to a back […]

{ 1 comment }