Unsexy Missions

"When's your next trip?"

This may be one of the most common questions asked of The Good Story. It's understandable because these trips and the products created as a result of them are the forward facing fruit of what the ministry does. 

FUN FACT: Did you know that TGS has traveled a total of seven weeks of the last 182 weeks we've been in existence? That's it!

So what does The Good Story do with the majority of its time if traveling is just a small fraction of the ministry?

The answer is simple. Our day-to-day workload is jam-packed with the quiet, unglamorous, unseen, "unsexy" work of equipping the one missionary and creating training tools and materials to empower the many missionaries.


The One

"Our support is critically low and I know the way we are communicating or our lack of communication is really affecting this. We need help."

I wish I could adequately articulate what it’s like to look into the face of a career missionary with decades on the frontlines and see the discouragement, tension and raw reality of their dwindling funding nipping at their heels.

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How is it possible that in the richest nation with the richest churches, missionaries are being pulled off the field because their support is too low? We ask ourselves this question all the time, and yet this scenario is one of the most common "client" realities we service in more mature missionaries. The support base that has so generously and selflessly kept missionaries on the field for decades is literally dying off, and no one in their 20s, 30s or 40s is stepping up to carry the financial and prayer mantle. (Research by the Reducing Missionary Attrition Project listed "lack of spiritual and financial support" as the number four reason missionaries come off the field.)

How can we help bridge these different generations who need one another to learn from and press into?

This gentleman’s humility and eagerness to learn new technology was SO touching. We started our first coaching session with him to transition him from sending plain-text, non-trackable emails to using the electronic email service Mailchimp, with visually stimulating templates and informative analytics about his supporters, as well as setting him up a dedicated Facebook group for his ministry partners. 

This might seem basic, but for many missionaries who have never received communication training or had any help bridging the gap from life on the mission field into the world of new technology, these steps in modernizing their communication footprint feel like climbing Mount Everest.

The majority of what we do at The Good Story isn't slick, shiny design or hopping on planes around the world to make films. Rather, it's getting in the deep water where many missionaries are drowning, feeling discouraged and hopeless. We throw out our life preserver and assure them we can help get them to shore. It may be coaching, consulting or creating products for them. Whatever it is… if you empower, train, and equip a single missionary, the potential for Kingdom impact is immeasurable.


The Many


We have spent untold hours the last few years creating different communication tools to multiply our efforts to equip. The biggest endeavor being The Good Story Academy. Since launching 11 months ago, it continues to grow in content and users!  Through the incredible effort of TEN Ambassadors all utilizing their abilities and knowledge — from building the academy website, filming and producing classes, writing scripts and designing visuals, down to the professional motion graphics that dance across the screen when you start a class —this wonderful resource was birthed!


Now missionaries can stream communication classes made just for them anywhere in the world for $8.00/month! We will continue to add 3-4 courses a year to extend our scope of training!

Here are some recent ways we are helping “the many.”

 Our recent Academy class on Storytelling released in September.

Our recent Academy class on Storytelling released in September.

 We held our first Academy LIVE class last week and will release a new series each quarter.

We held our first Academy LIVE class last week and will release a new series each quarter.

 Cofounders Ryan and Kelly Portnoy will be teaching a workshop at #SALT18 in Nashville, October 10-12, on Missional Creativity and are hoping to recruit more Ambassadors.

Cofounders Ryan and Kelly Portnoy will be teaching a workshop at #SALT18 in Nashville, October 10-12, on Missional Creativity and are hoping to recruit more Ambassadors.

Thank you for your faithful prayer and giving to this ministry. YOU are radically impacting The Great Commission for eternity! Thank you for supporting both the outward facing media trips as well as championing the “unsexy” day to day quiet labor of the ministry. 

Ryan Portnoy