FAQ’s from a long-term missionary
By: Meghan Liddy
What are two of the hardest parts of long –term missions?
Fundraising + Homesickness.
Financial partnership is one of the greatest gifts on the field. Having a team of people come together to support you and the call God has given you is a privilege. However, it has taken a lot of grace, boldness and humility to realize I can’t fund my mission alone. People on the field need people like you to help send us to fulfill God’s call. It can be pretty intimidating to ask for help but when people do join your team its incredible to watch what God can do through partnership. Homesickness can run pretty rampant some days. On the big moments like weddings, birthday’s holidays sometimes a computer screen doesn’t quite cut it. I am so thankful for technology but on those hard days Ghana can feel pretty far away. There are days I long for a coffee run with friends or for a hug from my mama.
When did you first feel called to missions or special needs ministry?
Ever since I began volunteering at a local after school program in middle school I felt the need to be more involved with the special needs community. While serving on several missions’ trips both domestic and international I felt God calling me closer and closer to advocate for both vulnerable and orphaned special needs children. In Uganda a little boy Stephen who has CP crawled his way quickly into my heart and forever changed my life. In February of 2013 I emailed home from rural Uganda and spoke about how God was calling me to commit to a lifetime overseas. I knew God was calling me to serve the overlooked special needs children. From then on out I knew God had big and some pretty overwhelming plans ahead. Today I call Ghana, West Africa home serving as The Assistant Director of the Treasured Ones. We work directly with hospitals, churches and families to help better empower and support families with special needs kiddos and to advocate better for the orphaned special needs. We believe in family preservation and orphan prevention through empowerment schemes and community support. We hope to see a world without overlooked and orphaned special needs children. I am also the single mama of my two littles’ Rhoda and Priscilla.
What is it like to be a mom on the mission field?
Its one of the greatest gifts but it comes with great responsibility. My girls have been through more than any mother can imagine. Yet they walk with their heads held high. They have taught me more about living life for Jesus than any missions trip or sermon. Because of them I love deeper and fight harder for the needs of people around me. Being a mother has taught me what it means to love someone unconditionally and to advocate hard. It has made me more compassionate towards Moms on the field. It has been incredible to watch my girls love the communities we work with in such a deep way.
When did you feel called to Foster/adopt?
Ever since I was little I knew adoption was something I had wanted to pursue. When I became a Christian I saw how God had adopted us into his family. I began to see all the ways Christians could serve the orphans and vulnerable. Currently I am fostering to adopt. I am a huge advocate for both adoption but most importantly orphan prevention. I believe as Christians we should give every opportunity and empower vulnerable communities to prevent orphans. There are so many families forced by poverty, disease and lack of resource that make the decision to relinquish rights to an orphanage in hopes their child will be better cared for there. However if we do our part and partner alongside those families and follow Christ in every moment we can help eliminate poverty orphans. I firmly believe children belong in families. There is also a huge need for families to hear the calling for adoption in countries all over the world. There are so many children waiting all over the world for forever families.
What are the two best parts of being a long term missionary?
One of the best parts of being a missionary long term is being able to set down roots in the community you are serving. You stop being a stranger and you become one of them.
What would you say to someone who is considering doing long term International Missions?
I would say there are a lot of different ways to answer the call. God calls everyone to missions whether sending or going. If you are considering serving long-term talk to your Church (pastors, mentors, peers and your missions department) pray with them, ask them questions and commit to having them keep you accountable. It is so important to have a sound support system to pray, partner and encourage you while you answer the call. You cannot do it alone. It takes a village. Go on some short-term missions all over; see where God is calling you before you buy yourself a one-way ticket. Seek scripture, what are gift God has given you, what are your passions how can you use them in a missions setting. Go with faith! God is with you he will not leave you. There will be hard days this commitment is not a light one. It’s also one that will grow you, stretch and teach you in ways you didn’t even know were possible.
For more of Meghan’s story and her adventures in Ghana, go to lemonslimesandlaughter.wordpress.com