Mission Smart: Critical Questions to Ask


As exciting as it is to see people in our churches volunteer for missionary service, many may tend to skip over key issues as they press forward to pursue their calling. They may lack the gifts, self-knowledge, training, or church support to make it as a cross-cultural missionary. 

David L. Frazier’s 2013 book, Mission Smart: 15 Critical Questions to Ask Before Launching Overseas, encourages both goers and senders to slow down and confront unhealthy idealism. It takes a look at the gaps and asks 15 critical questions about missionary appointment, preparation, placement, and care. The book’s goal is to reduce attrition and send out well-prepared workers who understand their callings and are prepared to thrive cross-culturally.
Mission Smart also includes thoughtful discussion questions and assignments for missionary candidates to work through with a mentor.


Want to know the 15 critical questions? Here’s the list, slightly adapted from how it appears in the book.

The Person

  1. • Why are you going? (checking heart motivations)
  2. • What is your contribution? (discovering personal gifting)
  3. • Do others confirm your calling? (seeking external confirmation)
  4. • Are you engaging cross-culturally now? (developing a cross-cultural lifestyle)
  5. • Do you need more education? (obtaining a marketable expertise)

The Partners

  1. • How will you equip and protect your family? (considering family needs)
  2. • Do you have close friends in your home church? (maintaining strong relationships at home)
  3. • Should you work with a mission agency? (considering a mission organization)
  4. • Could a tentmaking job be strategic? (establishing a platform in-country)
  5. • How well do you know your team? (determining on-field team expectations)

The Place 

  1. • Do you know your target people? (assessing the people group)
  2. • What will be your identity? (connecting and belonging in society)
  3. • Do you understand your first task? (learning the language and culture)
  4. • What is your attitude toward the people? (working a s across-cultural servant)
  5. • Are you walking in the light? (forming and maintaining healthy accountability)


We want to connect you with the unreached—through prayer, financial investment and even exploring how your gifts, talents and passions intersect with the expansion of the Kingdom of God among the nations.