What exactly is a mission trip? and what is it supposed to accomplish.
Is it simply the finding of opportunities to interact with unbelievers and have them come away with a feeling that Christians are nice people?
It just seems to me that there is limited time, energy and resources on the mission field. We can't do everything, we can hardly reach everyone. But with what we have, we are obligated to be most efficient and faithful as stewards. With the limited time, energy, and resources that we have, how can we herald the gospel in the clearest, most effective way? This seems like the end game.
But what do we usually do on the field? We coax the people, we entertain them, we paint their buildings (usually poorly), we try to hock our wares of English lessons, community development work, and health care, and we call it missions. To what end do these things point?
Not everyone is going to swallow the gospel pill. It's bitter and obnoxious and the Bible even says so. It is foolishness to the Greeks and a stumbling block to Jews. But to those who are being saved, it is the power of God unto salvation. I think we need to start off on the right assumptions based on what we know is true. Not everyone wants to submit to Christ, not everyone embraces his lordship. The gospel is not good enough news for a lot of people. So, it's time to stop selling it attached with free bonus products.
There are those who will respond to the gospel if they will but get the chance to hear it. To these the gospel must go.