Missions Series

Missions is short-term, mid-term, long-term AND lifelong


Years, months, weeks, days. Missions fits into all of these time frames. While more than an estimated 4 million people go on short-term trips every year, thousands of traditional missionaries go out to serve long-term, coming back for furloughs to raise support and then return to church planting and Bible translation.

Missions organizations such as GoCorps are taking a new approach  by sending people who use marketplace skills to assist long-term teams for two-five years. This new phenomenon is called “mid-term.”


So what exactly are the working definitions for “short-term,” “mid-term,” and “long-term” missions? The Navigators, a missions organization based in the United States, divides it up this way:

Short-term: less than one year, usually general service or evangelizing trips

Mid-term: 1-3 years, often career or skill specific opportunities to help long-term missionaries

Long-term: 3+ years, these are what we could call “career missionaries”

Whatever the time frame, each of these opportunities is part of outward proof of an inner commitment to follow the Lord’s calling to share the Gospel with all nations. Your lifelong commitment to Christ is made visible throughout your different terms of missions service.

1. Missions is your calling, Christian

2. Missions is not about you

4. Missions is urgent

5. Missions is what we are built for

6. Missions Wrap-up


8 thoughts on “Missions is short-term, mid-term, long-term AND lifelong

  1. What an inspiring story! And to do it with not only a spouse but also four kids…definitely a sacrifice. I’m glad you reminded us about the different durations of missions trips – often, I think about them either as only a few days or weeks long or as a lifelong commitment.

  2. Someone once said to me that short term missions are for the people going on the trip while long term missions are for the people being ministered to. I’ve always found that a really interesting distinction between the long-term and the short-term.

  3. Your friend’s sacrifice speaks volumes about her commitment to doing God’s work, whatever that may be. Individual missionaries give up a lot too, but I think taking your whole family (especially young children) to the mission field would be really hard. Ultimately rewarding, but hard.

  4. Angela’s story is very inspiring. Taking kids into the mission field seems like a whole additional level of commitment. I’m interested in the idea of mid-term missions, I’ve never heard of that sort of thing before.

  5. Pingback: Missions is your calling, Christian. | anothermindset

  6. Pingback: Missions is urgent | anothermindset

  7. Pingback: Missions is what we are built for | anothermindset

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