This is response from a comment by Vanity of Vanities….great question by the way!
Usher: Hey Deak, you got a response for Vanity of Vanities?
Deacon: Once again Usher, the overall understanding of missionaries is that they are weak, needy, dependent and obliged to come back to their church with their hat in hand begging for support.
Usher: Isn’t that what missionaries are to most churches?
Deacon: To most churches – that is exactly what the churches have made the missionaries out to be. Because mission funds are just another program and the church simply does it because they’ve been told that that’s the right thing to do. Missionaries are almost never a priority especially with the pastor. If they were, the pastor would have to give up more of his money. But today’s church has made them such a minority in the areas of finance, that they are supported separate from the church tithe with special offerings. As you and I are not supporters of the 10% tithe, then one might ask, where would support dollars come from to support the missionaries? From the congregation of course!
Usher: I get it. The congregation has no part in interacting with the missionaries, or getting their hands dirty. The pastor either hoards all the time with the missionary family or simply defaults to it because the congregation has no interest or simply doesn’t validate the role of the missionary other than coming back to the church to beg for money every so often! Wow, if the pastors only knew that by not making the congregation aware of the true roles of the missionary, they end up simply throwing all of the onus back onto him! And now he’s simply a jack-of-all-ministries and master-of-none!
Deacon: If one were to rebuild this thinking, they would simply do away with the tithe, spend time getting to know the missionaries in their body, work towards contributing to the cause of the missionary, send the pastor out to tent-making school and the church would once again flourish. A church could actually further the kingdom by supporting missionaries who are out making disciples instead of lame marketing schemes carried out by the modern church that don’t have a chance other than to grow programs.
Usher: Ain’t gonna happen! Man won’t change until God brings about disaster and takes away all the chocolates! We need another Egypt or fall of Rome or something to wake the church up. Till then, they’ll simply sit around and debate.
Deacon: Kind of like what we’re doing?
Usher: Hey, if one set of ears hears it and makes a true change in their way of thinking – we could have a revolution! And missionaries would be seen as warriors instead of pitiful little beggars as we have made them out to be.