Teachers: Affecting eternity, one student at a time
By Janeen Gutierrez | Ecuador in South America
Should a Christian's family be sacrificed on the altar of ministry? It's an important question.
Very few missionaries would say yes, even though a calling to missions certainly requires sacrifice on the part of those who serve. But without good care for missionaries' children, including a suitable education, families can face additional difficulties on the field, or even have to return home.
Mark Lans, SIM missionary to Ecuador and father of two "Missionary Kids" (MKs) says this: "The education of missionary children is often one of the greatest factors affecting a missionary’s duration, location, and effectiveness in the field of their calling.”
Here in Loja, Ecuador, the need for teachers in our MK school is critical. Without teachers, parents may be pulled away from growing, fruitful ministries to teach their children. It’s a tough balance for those who have been called by God into ministry. Missionaries serve out of joyful obedience to fulfill the Great Commission, and they are sent and supported by believers back home--all of whom want them to focus on furthering the gospel. However, missionaries also recognizes their responsibility as parents--not just ministry workers--and they don't want to sacrifice their children's welfare by prioritizing ministry above their own children.
Henry Brooks Adams, a historian and writer from the early 1800s, said that "a teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops."
“This is never truer than in the teachers who have influenced the lives of my children and our ministry," says Rebecka King, SIM missionary in Loja, Ecuador, and mom of three MKs. “On the mission field, our options to educate our children are often limited. Those who have dedicated their lives to teach our children have had an eternal influence in them. Their service has also increased the depth of our ministry.”
Missionary support roles--MK teachers, in this case--can be overlooked when we think of furthering of the gospel, but we would challenge you to remember them. MK teachers make it possible for seasoned missionary parents to stay on the field and to continue ministering to those around them, rather than needing to return home to oversee their children’s education.
Please consider how you can help keep missionaries on the field by supporting MK teachers.
If you are interested in helping fulfill our teaching need, please contact SIM today. We currently have one part-time teacher to begin the 2018/2019 school year for seven-plus levels of students (ages 8-16) in our small MK school. We also have a great need for homeschool assistance for our teammates who live in rural areas.
• each of our MKs to grow academically, in a strong relationship with Jesus and in knowledge and understanding of the Word.
• God to provide teachers for our MK school in Loja for the upcoming school year.
• God to provide rural homeschool assistance for our teammates that live outside of the city for this upcoming school year.