Bicentennial: Missions discipleship helps us hear about God’s work and join Him

Candace McIntosh greets a young girl while on a missions trip to South Asia

Candace McIntosh didn’t grow up in church, but for a short stint in her teen years, she attended a small church in her area.

While there, she was involved in Acteens, a missions discipleship group for girls in grades 7–12. And it changed her.

“It introduced me to a bigger world than my world on the farm in rural north Florida,” said McIntosh, now executive director of Alabama Woman’s Missionary Union. “That’s when I began to learn that God used a group of people called missionaries to do His work. Then as a young adult when I reentered the church, that’s when that passion grew deeper and wider.”

People came alongside her and helped her understand God’s heart for the lost, she said, and that changed the way she viewed both the world and her purpose in it.

It’s a legacy that’s been passed down for generations — people telling others about what God is doing and how He’s using missionaries to accomplish the task of sharing the gospel with those who haven’t heard it.

Missions discipleship is “not a program, it’s not an organization — it’s the vital part of the discipleship of children, students and adults to get the bigger picture of where God is at work and how He would want them to join Him in that work,” McIntosh said.

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