My kid’s school is far away from my ministry field. How important is it that I live among the people I’m trying to reach? If I can’t live “on site” how much will that affect my fruitfulness? It is important to consider the significance of what is called incarnational ministry.
Jesus was incarnational. What that means is though He was God, he took on human flesh and became a man. He left heaven, came to earth, lived among us and through that, that helped us to see what God the Father was like. He is our model. How important is it that we do this? This article addresses, not the issue of adapting to culture, but the question of living among the people we serve.
Do We Need To Live Among Them?
This is a real question for both cross-cultural and national missionaries as well. There are often many barriers to living among the people.
Does the principle of incarnational ministry mean that the only way to do missions is to live among those we want to reach? What about loving and providing for our families and their needs? What if the place I’m trying to reach is very remote or I can’t get a visa to stay there?