Recommended Reading

Sending churches and sent ones must be learners. They not only study the Bible and theology, but also the language and culture of their context so they can effectively communicate the good news of Jesus. In our aim to help every church see themselves as a sending church and every Christian as a sent one, we want to recommend great books to help along the way.


Ask-a-Missiologist is a series in which we do just that—ask a missiologist a current pressing missiological question. Interviewees have included Gregg Allison, Caleb Crider, JD Payne, Rodney Calfee, Nathan Garth, Matt Ellison, Sean Benesh, Nate Irwin, and Ken Winter. Got an interesting missiological question? Send it our way via email or Twitter and we'll find an expert to answer it.


Cultivating Missions Awareness

The Sending Church Elements are a framework for growing as a sending church. Cultivating Missions Awareness is a natural starting place for churches to take ownership of missions. This series addresses why being aware of God’s mission is important to churches, how to practically cultivate awareness of it, and some of the most common challenges to accomplishing this.

Sending church stories

One of the biggest perks at Upstream is encountering churches who are living our their sent identity. As part of our desire to encourage churches on mission, we want to put before you some of their stories, €”not as a way of saying, "This is what you should do,"€™ but rather, "€˜This is what some friends of ours are doing, and doing well."


The Dangers of Focusing Only on unreached people groups

Since the 1974 Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization, missions strategy has been more effectively aimed at reaching ethnolinguistic people groups. However, as good as this movement has been and continues to be, there are certain warnings worth noting. This series, originally started in 2015, explores the controversial idea of challenging certain overemphases on unreached people groups. 

Embracing Spiritual Conviction

The Sending Church Elements are a framework for growing as a sending church. Embracing Spiritual Conviction (Element 02) describes a transformation of the sending church, in which a theology of mission flows from the peoples' minds into their hearts. This series addresses why spiritual conviction is important and explain the means God gives for a church to grow in mission conviction.


The Incomplete Pass: A Call for Missionary Teams to Receive Well

Receiving new workers (whether they be short-, mid-, or long-term) on the mission field is one of the responsibilities of the long-term missionary. In Part Two of this series Upstream’s Executive Director, Larry McCrary, will be expounding on what it would look like for missionaries to receive workers well.

The God Who is Near All People: A Meditation on Acts 17:15-34

In this series, Bradley Bell, Direct of Content, teaches his readers the importance of meditating on Scripture. At the same time, he encourages his audience to be like Paul, and see the great idolatry that surrounds them by looking to the God that is near.


Four Levels of Missionary Care

Caring for the missionaries that we have and will send can be a great challenge. In this blog series, Neal Pirolo, founder and director of Emmaus Road International, casts vision for the different steps in sending in a Biblical way. 


The following is an excerpt from the forthcoming edition of The Sending Church Defined by Bradley Bell.