Phase 1: Interest and Calling
The “Interest and Calling” phase assists Apostolic Christian brethren in discerning and preparing for potential service as a missionary/goer through HarvestCall. Local church leadership is instrumental in assisting the candidate in this phase. HarvestCall provides resources and counsel to both the Elder and the candidate as they discern God’s call. Several options including both short-term and long-term service opportunities are available. Each candidate will be informed about the Sending Process including the blessings and challenges of ministry.
Biblical Decision Making
The process of discerning the call to go should be taken very seriously. The Lord works in different ways to call laborers to the Harvest. Regardless of how the Lord is working and calling, a purposeful process should be initiated by those considering going. To aid in this process, candidates should consider and answer honestly the following questions based on the Principles of Biblical Decision Making. These questions and principles should be applied throughout the sending process.
Are you in alignment with the Word? (God’s Word as the Foundation)
Are you accurately viewing God? (Having an Accurate Concept of God)
Are you acknowledging God’s sovereignty over this process? (Acknowledging God’s Sovereignty)
Are you daily walking with the Lord in a manner consistent with His will in Scripture? (Walking with God)
Are you daily praying about this decision? (Praying for Direction)
Are you asking those who know you best for counsel in this decision? (Seeking Wise Counsel)
Are you surrendered in this decision and ok with whatever the result is? (Trusting and Having a Surrendered Heart)
Are you trusting God’s timing? (Waiting on God’s Timing)
Interest and Calling Preparation Checklist
It is recommended that candidates go through the Interest and Calling Preparation Checklist. The checklist is made up of ideas, helpful activities, and resources that will be beneficial to the discernment process.
Resource: Interest and Calling Preparation Checklist
Believing they have been called by the Holy Spirit, the brother, sister or couple should share their calling with their home church Elder (if he is not already involved). At least two separate meetings should then be scheduled with the Elder – one for counsel and a second, to receive support to begin the sending process.
The first meeting should be centered on gathering counsel and input on discerning a call to the mission field. The Elder should lead the discussion in the meeting and focus on a range of topics including, but not limited to:
- Their relationship with Christ
- Counting the cost
- Demonstrated passion for outreach
- Victorious living
The Elder can refer to the Elder Counsel document as a base for his discussions with the brother, sister or couple.
After the first meeting, the prospective missionary/goer should take time to pray and consider the counsel received. If the calling is proved out and the prospective missionary/goer has a heart to move forward, a second meeting should be scheduled with the Elder to review the initial counsel and to ask for the Elder’s support to formally begin the sending process.
Resource: Elder Counsel Document
The Elder will determine, based on his discussions with the brother, sister or couple and prayer whether or not to provide his recommendation to HarvestCall or to withhold that recommendation. A recommendation will be required as a prerequisite to the candidate applying to HarvestCall and beginning the Application/Selection Process.
Elders should fill out the Elder Recommendation Form and verbally pass along his recommendation decision to the brother, sister or couple.
Resource: Elder Recommendation Form
Learn and Discern Online Orientation
Candidates should consider going through the Learn and Discern Online Orientation. The orientation has been developed by HarvestCall to direct candidates towards helpful perspectives and activities in the decision making stage. The information can be worked through at one’s own pace. In order to access the content, please contact the HarvestCall Outreach Manager.
Implications of Going
Candidates should review the Missionary Experience Document. This document provides an awareness of the unique challenges and blessings of cross-cultural service that should be understood in considering a decision for going or staying.
Resource: Missionary Experience Document
A survey trip is an investigative trip to the prospective field of service.
The candidate should take a survey trip at some point during the Interest and Calling phase in order to get a taste of the local culture, environment and team in the potential host country or mission to assist in further discerning the call that the Lord has placed on his/her heart.
The candidate should have a goal in mind for the trip to learn as much as possible about the potential opportunity while also taking time to seek the Lord.
Resource: Survey Trip Tips
Completing the Interest and Calling Steps
The Interest and Calling portion is compete when the brother, sister or couple decides to move forward with the Sending process, and they have the support of their Elder. At this time, initial discussions can begin with the mission to determine potential needs and whether or not the needs match the candidate's gifting.
These discussions will generally take place through the Outreach Manager, but may also occur directly with the mission. During this time, candidates should start thinking through the steps and potential time frames in the Confirmation and Commissioning Process and the overall Sending process.