Missionaries serving in the Fukuoka Japan Mission
If they are representative of some of the missionaries in other parts of the world and at different times in church history, there are those in this picture who, during the time they serve, face physical challenges, family members back home being very sick or dying or have died, scant resources, missing grandchildren's milestones, difficulty with the language, family members and friends that do not support them, missed schooling & sports opportunities, and homesickness.
They make no money - in fact they pay their own way. Some missionaries have been saving money for their missions almost all their lives, have sold cars or collections, or parents have to take second jobs and sacrifice other things to support their missionaries. Some are partially or completely supported by other members of the church. They've left family businesses and farms, leaving their part of the work to be done by others.
On their missions they will be cold, hot, hungry, elated, sad, tired, and enthused. They will be treated rudely and like sacred ministers. They face physical dangers, threats of violence and welcomed into homes and fed the best the family has to offer. Dogs will chase and children will embrace the missionaries.
Why do they serve?
To bring the world His truth.
Every person who has the privilege and blessing of meeting missionaries are being given the opportunity to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to read the Book of Mormon, pray about it and the teachings of Christ - to know if they are true by the very real power of God - and then make changes in their lives to be baptized.
Then, they are further supported through an established church with programs designed to bring them close to Christ. That through that strength and personal study and obedience - they can enter the temple of God and be sealed for eternity to their family…then continue to gain strength, study, and to obey that when the world has gone away….they will be with their families and Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ forever.
Quite a lot of blessings possible … and the potential that another child of God will hear and respond as outlined above … that is worth ALL of it.