Mission Mindset: Pre-Trip Resources

by Melanie Cocalis, Community Development Coordinator

As we began a journey towards responsible missions, to be a place where short-term missions collides with long-term community development, we felt that the place to start was with ourselves. With our thoughts. With our heart. As outsiders entering into a community that isn’t what we consider home, we understood there was a role we needed to play in how we entered that community. As we worked through what we thought was most important from our own experience, we felt it was necessary to share this with those coming on Next Step mission trips. In response, we created what we call a Mission Mindset. This Mission Mindset simply includes four core values to embody over the course of a mission trip; values we believe ultimately contribute to a dignified interaction with the communities we are partnering with.


In order to make this accessible to those going on a mission trip, we created a packet of information to help guide you through the core values. This includes scripture, main points, a key takeaway, and follow up questions for each core value. If you are interested in reading more, click here to access our Mission Mindset Packet.


In addition to the packet, we wanted to make this information more accessible and decided to take it to Facebook Live over the past few months. Each month we dove into one core value and hosted training sessions to engage listeners. We encourage you to explore this content and use it for pre-trip training with your students, engaging them in conversations about responsible missions before your trip takes place. Here is a link for each Facebook Live session:


Humble Servant

As humble servants, we are eager to partake in the work of Christ. We are motivated to serve for Him. We are able to serve through Him. We are only effective with Him.



Fervent Listener

Listening opens the door to long-lasting relationships. A fervent listener is one that cares about the community, and seeks to invest time and energy into educating oneself of the community you will enter.



Zealous Developer

As the body of Christ, we have the opportunity to become zealous developers through the way we interact with the community we are serving alongside. Simply becoming aware of these concepts is a great start. You have the opportunity to be a part of sharing in the gifts of the community you are entering, in order to see work continue much after your mission trip. Pour yourself into the people, resources, leadership, and skills that already exist in a community.



Discontent Ambassador

As discontent ambassadors, we recognize that we hold a significant responsibility. Our responsibility is to carry Christ’s name in a way that honors Him. His strength is our momentum to continue sharing love and when, even when situations are grim and hopeless.


Next Step Ministries