Team leader debriefing guide: Session 3

  • Sing songs of thanksgiving.
  • Take a few moments to reflect on any presentations or informal sharing of stories and testimonies so far. How have people responded? How have your feelings changed (if at all) from the first day you returned?

Devotional – Putting feet on our faith
  • Have five team members read James 2:14-18, one verse each.
  • God has guided, protected, and blessed our team throughout our time together. We have learned and grown a lot as a result of this experience. What challenge does this passage from James present to us? (We need to put our faith into action; faith without action is dead.)

Team discussion – Hearing God’s call

Brainstorm ideas for how to use what you have learned to reach out to others with God’s love. What needs in your church or community could God use you to meet? What happened during your trip experience that you want to have happen in your own community?

Possible ideas might include:

  • Continue with prayer partners on your team.
  • Perform secret acts of kindness for church members.
  • Set up a “parents’ night out” for your pastor and parents of young children in your church. Have parents drop off the kids at church for an evening of Bible fun, games, and crafts.
  • Spend a Saturday helping to fix up a sister church.
  • Identify people in your church whom God may be calling to mission service.
  • Include news and prayer requests from your host country in your church bulletin.
  • Organize events: rake leaves, pick up trash in the neighborhood, have a car wash, or hand    out cards with a message of God’s love.
  • Schedule a Habitat for Humanity work day.
  • Befriend international students or immigrants in your community. Invite them to your home and church events.
  • Reach out to people from your host country living in your community. Invite them to church and a fellowship meal. Visit their church and share testimonies about your experience in their country.
  •  Volunteer at a homeless shelter.
  •  Schedule service projects on a regular basis.
  •  Plan a prayer walk in your community.
  • Start a relationship with a church in the host country.
  • Sponsor someone from your host country to be a short-term missionary to your church or community.
  • Write letters to congressional representatives about peace and justice issues in your host country.
Keep a list of any suggestions, and anything your team wants to follow up on.

Action – what next?
  • Gather in a circle and pray for God’s guidance as you think about “what next?”. Seek God’s direction for transforming your church community so that the whole church is moved to action.
  •  Identify one or two projects that the team would like to follow up on.

Continuing your mission vision

Review the “Continuing your mission vision” points that were included in Transition resources” and think about ways team members can continue to stay involved in missions.
  • Read. Look for mission biographies and histories, magazines, blogs, and newsletters. Expand your vision of God’s work in the world and see where you fit in.
  • Pray. Make it a daily habit to pray for the missionaries and church leaders with whom you worked. Pray alone, or pray with others. Pray for specific people groups or countries.
  • Learn. Devote yourself to learning more about one or two missionaries in a foreign country. Attend mission conferences. Ask lots of questions. Find out how people are going into unreached areas as tentmakers, using their secular jobs to declare Christ.
  • Listen. Talk to missionaries, and keep current on world news. Hear about needs and commit them to prayer.
  • Go. Seek continued opportunities to serve. Perhaps God will lead you into future service as you seek His will now, by being a missionary to the people around you.

Fellowship time

Close the formal session with a prayer of thanksgiving and praise, and then enjoy a time of food and fellowship.