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Monday, November 1, 2010

Eternal Value?

The New Living Translation says this in Mark 16:15, "And then he told them, Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone, everywhere."  Jesus spoke these words to his disciples just before he ascended.  As some of His last words on earth, I'm sure He spoke what was of utmost importance.  He would not have wasted this time talking about things that weren't extremely important.

There were several things of great importance said then, but this statement, what we call "the Great Commission" is the driving force behind the mission of the church.  We must tell this good news to 'everyone everywhere.'  We are to make disciples of all nations.  This is our opportunity to truly make an eternal impact.

I have never been overseas.  Someday I hope to take a series of short term mission trips, but up to this point I have never had that opportunity.  The focal point of my calling is here, in America.  Your calling may be somewhere else, but together we must evangelize this world.  But even though my calling is here I desire the word of God to be preached everywhere, and to everyone.  I believe in missions, and though I can't go, someone is going.  And, those who are in those uttermost parts of the world need my support and my prayers.

I can't imagine how hard it must be in some parts of the world.  It is so hard here sometimes.  Often I feel alone, but I know Christ is with me.  Sometimes I feel betrayed, but so was Christ.  Occasionally it takes all that is in me, just to keep going but I keep going because I know God has called me.  The Word tells me I'll reap if I don't faint.  There are people though, who are serving as missionaries in distant lands who have very little support.  They really are alone, except for Christ. The suffer harsh persecution and betrayal daily.  Some of them keep going until they die on that mission field.

God is moving here in our country, and he's moving maybe to an even greater extent elsewhere.  But we need to get behind mission efforts wherever they might be going on.  If you can't support financially like you wish, please pray.  Prayer has no boundaries.  God in Heaven can hear my prayers here in Ohio, and strengthen my brothers in the farthest reaches of the planet.  We are one body.  We have one call.  We serve one savior.

One final note, I am so used to preaching here in America to people who have heard the Word of God over and over, that I was completely surprised recently by the hunger that people have for the gospel in other countries.  Our people here, have heard a million sermons.  Books are everywhere.  CD's, videos, podcasts and so on are plentiful, we have untold resources at our disposal to help us spread the good news, but it isn't that way in much of the world.

I recently was contacted by two different ministers from the Philippines.  They are about a day's journey from each other.  But both contacted me, just days apart.  They don't know each other, yet they both claim that they were led by the Spirit of the Lord to our website and more specifically to watch one message, "Bringing the Glory of God to My House."  What they have in common is that they are hungry.  Spiritually speaking they are starving.  They both have been searching for someone, anyone, who will share just bits and pieces of the truth of the word of God that will help them learn how to accomplish more in their service to the Lord and His Kingdom.  They are taking what they have received and are sharing it with other ministers who are also hungry, in hopes that the understanding they are gaining will allow them to accomplish the eternal goals of Christ.

I am honored to have played some small role in the building of the kingdom there, yet I am stricken with sadness that we here in America have so many resources available to us and rather than focus on the eternal things of the Kingdom of God we are distracted by small, temporary things.

Souls are dying, children are hungry, Christians in various places need support and prayers to accomplish more.  Let's each ask ourselves, "What am I doing today that has eternal value?"  Does our answer look anything like Mark 16:15?

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