By Trevor Forbis and SR staff
GenSend has mobilized hundreds of students to live on mission. The Send Relief (SR) initiative provides opportunities for students to learn what it means to live life on mission in major cities across North America and encourages the Church to help raise up the next generation of leaders.
During Spring, Summer, Fall or Winter breaks, collegiates can help plant a church, meet the needs of refugees or rebuild a community after a natural disaster. Those who participate in GenSend are called GenSenders, and their experiences often shape their futures. After two years of serving with Send Relief in this way, I believe every college student would benefit from spending a summer of GenSend. Here are my three reasons why:
- Natural evangelism. Many struggle to live missionally in their day-to-day lives. But GenSend can train you to make evangelism part of your lifestyle. From riding public transportation to playing basketball at the park or working alongside a local organization, the main purpose of GenSend is for students to love the people of the city as Jesus loves us all. The most memorable conversations I had during my GenSend summer were with people I met in local shops or on public transportation. My city coach and fellow student missionaries taught me how to live with gospel intentionality. I am forever changed because of the decision to serve with Send Relief’s GenSend.
- Missional flexibility. Too often, ministry is planned for us. All we have to do is show up. GenSend creates a unique opportunity for our spiritual gifts to flourish by giving each student an opportunity to intentionally choose where and how they serve in the city. There is no highly structured itinerary in the day-to-day during our time with GenSend. I was able to create a schedule based on building relationships in the city in ways that God has gifted me to make the biggest impact for His kingdom.
- Real community. Going to a new city can be overwhelming. Yet we should look forward to situations outside our comfort zones where we can be challenged. J.D. Greear, pastor of Summit Church, says in his blog, “If dependence is the objective, weakness is an advantage.” Send Relief has created a very special environment where they provide collegiates with resources and time to grow in maturity and leadership skills. GenSend will pull you out of your circle, and bring you into a gospel-centered community that can use you to highlight God’s power to a lost world.
Send Relief’s GenSend is the opportunity of a lifetime. Our generation has the opportunity to be equipped and made into disciples like never before. In the end, it is all about being the hands and feet of Christ and taking the gospel to those who need to hear the good news of a great Savior.
Will you choose to take the next step in living missionally ?
Trevor Forbis currently works at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and has served two terms as a GenSend summer missionary.