STM Survey Results – 2017
Responses were received from 33% of those to whom the Short-Term Missions Survey was sent in 2017. As this was the first year a survey was utilized, this was quite a good return rate.
The majority of respondents indicated that:
- The length of their trip was "Just right"
- The cost of their trip was "Just right"
- Raising funds for their trip was not difficult
- Their expectations of the trip were "Exceeded"
- They anticipated an opportunity to give a report on the trip to their church
About half said they may now consider the possibility of a longer term of service as a Missionary Associate.
We asked how they learned about their trip, how they think they could have been better prepared, if there is anything they suggest we add to OPCSTM.org - all so we could gain insight into how we might better serve those who wish to participate in short-term missions.
A good number of them also shared their photos or wrote a testimonial for OPCSTM.org.
Some answers to "What God Taught Me," and other comments from the survey:
Am so grateful the OPC provides short trips like these--it might be the very thing God uses to put me on the field long term!
As a young person, I was incredibly blessed and edified by the older team members.
God blessed me greatly when I discovered the opportunity to go on this trip - and has blessed me every year I've gone.
God taught me much patience, humility and compassion. He also gave me a greater love for corporate prayer.
God taught me that you learn much of what you actually believe by telling what you believe to others.
He showed me that He will always provide, and I have no reason to fear or try to control a situation that isn't mine to control.
He taught me how to get to know Him better through prayer and rich fellowship with brothers and sisters in Christ.
He taught me that my "comfort zone" can actually be a bad place of complacency.
I did become more comfortable in talking to unbelievers about Christ, and I praise God for growing me in this way.
I did not expect to feel bonded with the team. Everything we did we did as if we were one mind.
I learned how much God uses things like small talk and pleasantries to further His kingdom, and how important those things are.
I learned how much work goes into teaching children. I gained a new appreciation for what such teachers do.
I learned that I do really love working with kids, and that serving God's Kingdom, and preaching the gospel really is one of the best experiences in life.
I wish that I took the time to serve God and people in specific ways like this more often.
It was a wonderful time where I believe I really had an impact on some of those I encountered and the entirety of the trip definitely affected me deeply.
It was challenging in ways that produced growth in my life. Thank you, Jesus.
That conversion and spiritual understanding are the work of his Spirit and that sowing and watering and praying are things I can do.
That even a very short missions trip can still be beneficial to my faith and friendships with people from my church.
That God has given everyone different gifts and that no matter what ours is, there is a way we can use it for His glory and to help other saints.
That prayer is more important than action. That being around believers at all times is good for Gods people.
The experience deepened my faith so greatly, it showed me better what the church and body of Christ should look like.
The global nature of his people, the difficulties missionaries face on the field, the precious fellowship that flows from serving the Lord/sharing his gospel together.
The team testimonials were the most helpful to me in preparing for the trip to the Czech Republic.