perspective

When You Want a Different Life

by Amy Medina on November 1, 2016

I live in a tropical paradise.  The glorious Indian Ocean is my backdrop—I can see it between the trees at my house, when I run errands around town, and when I watch my daughter’s soccer games.  For fun we take a little boat to an uninhabited island and snorkel over colorful coral.  The weather is […]

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When the Mission Field Comes to You

by Chris Lautsbaugh on June 29, 2016

While rounding a corner on a run in the United States the other day, I came across a Muslim women clad in a headdress and robes. I could see her cower off the sidewalk a bit as this white, American man came plodding her way in middle America. You could sense her apprehension and read […]

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America, Meet the World

by Chris Lautsbaugh on March 18, 2016

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 […]

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I Believe, Help My Unbelief

by Chris Lautsbaugh on December 30, 2015

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 […]

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On Avoiding The Resentment

by Tara Livesay on October 30, 2015

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News Flash:  There aren’t any news flashes in this post, but there are some things we all tend to do over and over again that get us in trouble.  I decided maybe that means we (I) need to keep talking about it. * * * There is just something about the life overseas that creates […]

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People are not our Project

by Chris Lautsbaugh on September 30, 2015

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, […]

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5 Thoughts for the Local Church

by Chris Lautsbaugh on June 17, 2015

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 […]

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They Are Not Ready…

by Chris Lautsbaugh on May 20, 2015

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“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 […]

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Money Gives us Power over People

by Chris Lautsbaugh on February 24, 2015

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 […]

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Dangerous Stories

by Chris Lautsbaugh on January 22, 2015

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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 […]

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My Hope For You in 2015

by Rachel Pieh Jones on January 5, 2015

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Wouldn’t it be nice if I could hope for you only and fully that all your days be merry and your nights be bright and your path be smooth and the sun shine gently on your face? I do hope the road rises to meet you and that you find joy in every relationship and […]

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Missions Field or Land of Opportunity?

by Chris Lautsbaugh on December 29, 2014

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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 […]

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