“We pastors are being killed by the professionalizing of the pastoral ministry. The mentality of the professional is not the mentality of the prophet. It is not the mentality of the slave of Christ. Professionalism has nothing to do with the essence and heart of the Christian ministry. The more professional we long to be, the more more spiritual death we will leave in our wake.” These words appear in John Piper’s book “Brothers, We Are Not Professionals: A Plea to Pastors for Radical Ministry.” I had been searching for someone who would write about this for a while. The book was written some time ago, how did I miss this? John Piper has words that apply to the short term mission movement. All of us in the work of mobilizing teams think deeply about teams that are prepared, culturally sensitive, and with a sense of ready. We think constantly about the dignity of the poor by finding partnerships that are reciprocal. In doing this professional thinking have we ruled our what one blogger calls the “gospel movement?” I heard someone last month say, “Don’t let perfect get in the way of good.” I know just about any of us could tear this comment apart. But, isn’t hearing this quite refreshing. It appears to me that Jesus called people out of their professions. I’m not sure he really needed all of the skills the disciples offered from previous employment. Fishermen were handy, but these guys were willing learners ready to follow Jesus, make mistakes along the way and see that, in spite of who they were, they could be used in mighty ways by God! I would like to trade this professional surge for the phrase, “thoughtful surge.” Maybe it’s time to step back and be thoughtfully prepared to serve on mission trips rather than thoroughly prepared. What are your thoughts?