November 10, 2010
The Global Outreach Center is a student-oriented program focused on getting Oklahoma Baptist University students involved in overseas missions.
“Global Outreach trips are opportunities for students to have missional experiences overseas,” said Dale Griffin, dean of spiritual life at OBU.
He is in charge of overseeing the proposed GO Trips for this upcoming year.
A main trip that is already in the making for this upcoming January is Rahab’s Rope, a trip to South Asia that will work with and minister to individuals coming out of the sex trade.
Another trip will put students in the heart of the Amazon Basin, where they will work in villages helping people with personal hygiene development, and rudimentary medical assistance in South America.
Other trips that will span from January to the spring and summer months include a trip to the North Eastern part of South Asia, Northern Africa, Russia, France, Eastern Asia and even places as close as Utah.
But how do people get involved in GO Trips? And how are they accomplished?
According to Griffin, GO Trips are student focused.
“The Go Outreach Council is [essentially] the nexus for all mission trips for OBU,” said Griffin.
When students fill out half-sheet application forms, located in Montgomery Hall, they are asked what places they feel God is calling them to minister to. Students will sit down with the faculty board in an interview typesetting to determine how to make a prospective trip work.
For any trip to take place there are five things that need to happen.
The first of these things is prayer.
“It begins with prayer. We are asking every student on campus to pray, pray for the nations,” said Griffin.
Griffin said that when students are collectively praying for other nations and actively lifting countries up to the Lord that the beginning of change is about to occur.
Next, the volunteer fills out the half-sheet application where he or she is willing to make the trip overseas. This person or persons is obviously very crucial to the plan, as they will be doing the grunt work of the mission trip.
That is, getting to know and minister to the people group that is being focused upon directly.
The third part to the process is the sponsor.
The person who is going to oversee the team and ensure everything comes together smoothly.
After the sponsor is found, the team must find a contact, a person already in the field that the students will be working with while they are in the mission field.
Griffin said this is usually a person that has already been stationed in the nation, and been working with the people previous to the mission trip in question.
The final part is the sending agency. Someone has to buy the tickets and pay for the room and board of students traveling overseas.
This is often the job of the GOC, though it is not always the only sending agency involved in the process.
Once all these five things come together the trip focus comes to the drawing board.
The GOC’s goal for each mission trip is to send each team of students to the field for a period of three weeks.
Within the first week students will be running off of wholly energy.
Being in an entirely new atmosphere and experiencing the new cultures creates excitement and adrenaline within the students.
By the second week, missionaries are tired, and drained from all the work and excitement put into the first week.
The final week is mainly focused on building relationships with the people, to connect with the people and build lasting relationships between the student workers and the residents of the area.
The purpose of the three-week trip is so that the missionaries (students) can connect to those they are ministering to.
They will be given the chance to see the people for who they are as a society, and to be open to the heart of the culture.
Griffin said, “A trip can be initiated by a sponsor, by a sending agency, or the student who is praying.”
Therefore, GOC’s goal is to connect students with trips that are built around the desires God has placed on their individual hearts, everything else is just detail to accomplishing the ultimate mission.
Griffin said everyone can get involved in GO Trips, whether they are called to go in into the field and do the hands on work, or if they are simply called to pray.
“The modern mission movement started with college age, young people praying,” said Griffin, “as a motivational boost to get students enthusiastic about praying for both upcoming and future missions, as well as getting young people interested in discovering what God is calling them to do with the talents He has granted to them.”