Well Sent: Reimagining the Church’s Missionary Sending Process
author Steve Beirn
This book is an excellent overview of all the topics that a church faces as they seek to develop a global missions program. Beirn’s years of experience serving as a missions pastor of a local church have equipped him to write the book that is full of biblical support for what a church should be doing without excluding the practical ways to implement into a church’s programming. There are action points questions at the close of the chapters so that the reader does not forget to reflect on what should be implemented and applied to his/her context. The book opens with the background on why churches should be sending missionaries, and then there is much information about how the church can actually mobilize the missionaries to service. There are many resources included in appendices at the end that have been provided so that churches and church missions leaders will have templates for some of the items they may wish to implement.
Some of the specific helpful guidelines include a list of questions to ask a potential missionary candidate, how to navigate the relationship between a mission sending agency and the church from which the missionary is sent, and a list of questions of how to adopt both the missionary worker and the work that is being done. An important point made in the book is that missions can mean different things to different people, and Beirn does an analysis on issues to tackle so that the local church (of any size) can keep from being distracted from their purpose. Nestled among Beirn’s finely written chapters that are an easy read for anyone, there are vignettes from Murray which provide some very pointed examples of correct or incorrect mindsets for missions.
The reader may argue that Calvary Church of Lancaster PA is unique. That may be true, but it not an excuse to ignore the valuable lessons and model that Beirn proposes. American churches have a great need to reevaluate their biblical ownership and role in the sending of missionaries. Beirn’s book is a refreshing breeze reminding us of that God-given responsibility.