Learning As We Go
Within mission work, all of our fields have had their ebbs and flows of learning effective ministry and mission tools and tricks. From saying the wrong things to practicing ineffective missional practices, we have definitely fallen short. It’s no surprise that we fall short, Romans 3:23 tells us “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Our humanity is simply incapable of being perfect, which is why we strive to continually point back to Jesus, even in the midst of mistakes and weird moments.
At Word Made Flesh Bolivia, learning is part of our structure. The wonderful staff in Bolivia work directly with women in prostitution. This ministry requires long hours, emotional support, and patience. As they tirelessly pray and support these women, it is a whole head, heart, and soul experience of transforming lives. One WMF Bolivia staff member says, “We adhere to the highest professional standards, strive to be ethical in our practices, and seek to keep growing and learning.”
The work we do around the world may not come naturally to all of our staff members, and it might not be incredibly easy or successful on our first attempt. At WMFB, we adhere to guidelines and best practices as we learn and grow. This is the beauty of deep, intertwined community between mission fields; we learn from each other as the Spirit guides and directs us. When one field struggles, we use the gifts, knowledge, and resources of another to help pick them back up to continue our mission.
As the Scriptures teach us in Ephesians 4:2, we should live lives being “completely humble and gentle.” Whatever ministry the Lord has directed us to, our priorities of humility, gentleness, patience, and learning should always outweigh our prideful hearts trying to change a culture or way of life. Missions take time, it takes relationships and intentionality and slow moving progress. Our prayer for every individual involved with our mission is to take moments of simplicity and humility to learn. For those on the ground, or those just supporting from afar, let us strive today to simply learn, grow, and be moved by the Spirit.
Adapted from an interview with Kara Chambers (former WMF Bolivia Women’s Program Coordinator)
In her time as Women’s Program Coordinator, Kara Chambers oversaw all outreach and therapeutic components of the program ensuring that it met best-practice standards in caring for and treating victims of trauma. After graduating from George Fox University with a dual degree in social work and Spanish, Kara interned for both a refugee resettlement program and a program for Latinx survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault before joining the WMFB staff in 2017 and concluded her time with WMFB in 2021.