By Caroline Mitchel
As the world offers more opportunity for travel, immigration and cross-cultural relationships, we as the church must not think of it as coincidental but simply as the plan God has for his people to better share the gospel. Just years ago, international mission opportunities were something that required a large amount of time, commitment, money and risk. It required great bravery and conviction to step on a plane and go to a place you had never seen or researched before on the internet. All you had were brochures or the verbal recommendations from those who had gone before you — it took immense faith and resources that not everyone had access to.
Now, international mission opportunities are literally at our fingertips. Websites have been specifically created to promote mission opportunities geared towards your age-group, profession, and hobbies. Ministries have also become more creative in ways to involve their community in missions. If you can’t physically go on a trip, you can either hop online to donate financially or you can shop on Amazon and send tangible items across the world. There has never been a better and easier time to go and give than now. But just because going on and giving to international missions is more accessible now doesn't mean it requires less faith to participate. It just means we are given more of an opportunity to display our faith through missions.
Will you now go? Will you now give?
Throughout scripture the bible is guiding believers to participate in missions and expressing the importance it should hold in our lives. Matthew 24:14 even predicts when the end times will come all according to the church’s missional reach.
“This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” - Matthew 24:14
In fact, in Matthew 4:19 Jesus commanded his disciples to simply “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” That statement encompassed all the disciples were asked to do as Believers. Once we follow Jesus, he transforms our hearts into loving and serving others — most importantly, he overcomes our heart so much that we can’t help but tell people about it.
Choosing to carry the responsibility of missions as a Christian is not just for those who physically go. It is also for those who stay behind. For those of us who chose to stay home, it is our responsibility to give of our resources to the cause of spreading the gospel through prayer. Sacrificing your resources, like time in prayer or money to give, is a truly humbling and joyful experience.
Leaving the comfortability of your home, family and comforts requires immense faith. Choosing to spend your money on supporting others to go on mission is a selfless sacrifice. But spending time praying for the gospel to be shared is the most powerful resource you have. I encourage you to look at your life and consider the resources you can better sacrifice to the cause of spreading the Good News.
Will you now go? Will you now give?
Over memorial day weekend, Grace City Church brought a team of 16 people to San Luis to partner with Caring Hearts in many ministries. They drove after they finished work on Thursday, arriving late at night, and wasted no time the next morning, waking up to go visit those in prison and share God's love. They prayed for people at the Blind center and watched God do miracles. On Saturday, they ran around, playing with the children at the soup kitchen and teaching them a bible lesson about God's love for them. The group was very musically talented and used their gifts to lead the Caring Hearts Church into a time of worship with songs they learned in Spanish. They passed out clothes and food to those in need at the dump, and prayed for the sick at the shut in ministry. One thing that was particularly special about this team is that they didn't just come and act as missionaries for a week, but their time in Mexico was a continuation of the mission they are on in Vegas. Las Vegas is known for being a city far from God. They believe that they will one day see "Sin City" transform to "Grace City".
"During the shut in ministry, the first home we were in was the most impactful. It was the home of a blind mother and blind son. The son had lost a leg. Their illnesses were due to diabetes. The mom was in her seventies and the son in his fifties. They lived in a very small place. It impacted me most because we sang a song with them and they sang along with such joy despite the things they were going through. It encouraged me and taught me a lot in my own faith that our joy cannot be taken away."- Acamy