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Matthew 28:19 says: “Go and make disciples in all nations”. If this verse is to have any force on those of us who follow Jesus than we must GO. Yet sometimes we face unexpected barriers. As I see it, our modern day culture has thrown us three curve balls. Concepts we are all very familiar with and that are appropriate in everyday life, but not when it comes to accomplishing the Great Commission. In fact these three ideas are barriers we must all overcome:
There is no such thing as Spiritual Retirement.
We are all working toward retirement. That magical time when we don’t have to work from 9-5 and then some. Lazy days filled with golf, cruises, and lounging around the house all day. Admittedly, for some of us, retirement is a ways off but it still a possibility. We put in our 30 years of service and we are entitled to it. The problem is that many of us take a cue from our culture and retire not only from physical work but from God’s Work to. Reaching the world is for the young and the idealistic we say. I am too old for that. I have done my time, now its time for the next generation. Really? Where do you find that in the Bible? Moses was 80 when God started to use Him. Abraham was 99 when he received the son of promise. Caleb was 80 when he was used to siege a city. The work of God is too important, we are never given permission to retire.
There is no such thing as Spiritual Disability.
Perhaps you know someone who draws disability. Most who do don’t like it but it is a fact of life. There are times when, physically speaking, we can’t accomplish our jobs anymore. At this point we stop working and draw a partial paycheck from our employer. A great way to help those who are facing physical issues yet bad idea when it spills into our Christian faith. Moses had a speech impediment. Fanny Crosby was blind. When Moses brought up his disability to God, God responded: WHO GAVE YOU THAT TONGUE! Friends, just because you face a physical disability does not mean God has put you on the shelf as damaged goods. He desires to see you get in the game.
There is no such thing as Spiritual Ineligibility.
I’m sorry you are not eligible. How many times have you heard that? Whether for a grant, a loan, a service or an award no one likes to be ineligible. Our world seems to be filled with opportunities prone to ineligibility. You must have all the criteria or else you have no chance. Friends, with God no one is ineligible. No sin, no matter how big, can keep you from serving God. When are sins are forgiven we can be in the game. God used David, a man who committed adultery and murder. God used Paul, a man who once hunted down Christians. God can use you.
The world is full of lost and dying people. If you follow Jesus you have the ability to rescue them from an eternity of suffering. Don’t just resign yourself to apathy because your to old, wounded or stained. Ask God to do something miraculous. Our world is in desperate need of men and women like us, those who are not good enough by the worlds standards, to reach them for Jesus Christ. So that we may say as 1 Corinthians 1:31 states: “Let him who boasts boast in the Lord”.
Howare you going into all the world?
What challenges has God helped you overcome in order to go?
As told from David and Amy Schmid, missionaries to Haiti.
It’s been two weeks since the 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti, many people here have referred the passing days as AE or After Earthquake which in sense shows how life-changing this event has become for many of us. You need to understand that this catastrophe has not just affected the capital, Port-au-Prince but the entire country. Haiti is roughly the size of Maryland so the effects of the earthquake were felt all over the country. Two major towns in the south of the country, Jacmel and Aux Cayes had major destruction as well.
The only building on the mission campus to collapse was the Bible School building that was built in the 1940s out of essentially packed earth. Other buildings have suffered structural damage but for now they are standing. Our missions’ (Crossworld) Crisis Management Team is now on the ground and helping coordinate aid.
The missionaries and staff at the Bible college are housing at last count almost 3,500 people consisting of 600 families – 2500 adults and 1600 children. These refugees all camp out during the night and go out in search of aid during the day. Some aid is coming to the campus, although its not from the government. Most aid is coming from other missionaries from around the country. These missionaries are about 100 miles away and each delivery is taking between 10-12 hours to deliver, so each delivery is a real blessing. We are making due with what we have and have made contact with several aid organizations in an effort to relief some of the needs represented at the campus. We are attempting to set up a landing field for a helicopter in the soccer field, but have not yet been able to have helicopter contact.
In spite of all the destruction around them, many of the people seeking refuge on our campus are singing hymns and praising God. On Sunday, we had a service in which a number of people came forward to begin a relationship with Jesus Christ. It was a time of singing, praying and rejoicing in God’s provision of protection.
Please be praying specifically for the following:
1. For safety from looting and theft. Many who are looking for aid and not finding it are turning to crime.
2. For wisdom on part of those giving aid. This is a disaster on a scale that many cannot imagine.
3. Pray for the safety of the rescue workers and medical teams who are still struggling not to be overwhelmed by the needs present.
Follow their story here.
Do you know a missionary or have a family member in Haiti? Send their story here and let the word out. Prayer works.
Many of you have been following the news concerning the earthquake that hit Haiti a few days ago. I want to challenge you all to consider how you might help. One way my family and I are showing our support is through giving. I am part of the Christian and Missionary Alliance, a denomination that has long been concerned with global issues. They will be collecting funds to help support the relief efforts that are ongoing in Haiti. All the funds collected will be sent to the relief arm of their denomination Compassion and Mercy Associates (CAMA). In a recent statement CAMA director Phil Skellie stated, “CAMA is gearing up to assist survivors of the 7.0 earthquake that destroyed Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital, on January 12. According to a CNN report, the death toll may top 100,000. The hospitals are gone, and medical supplies are desperately needed. About 3 million people—one-third of Haiti’s population—were impacted by the quake. In partnership with sister organizations already on the ground, CAMA will provide immediate assistance—including clean water, emergency shelter, medical aid, and other necessities—as well as long-term help in rebuilding efforts, integrating Jesus’ message of redemption with practical acts of compassion. A compassionate response during a disaster tangibly expresses Christ’s love.” Join us by allowing CAMA to be your hands to a hurting world. Together, we can help support our brothers and sisters whose lives have been disrupted by this earth shattering disaster.
What other creative ways can we use to reach out to the people of Haiti?
Ambassadors are prestigious people. They are men and women of intrigue. If you’ve ever watched a spy movie you know all about diplomatic immunity given to them and their staff. It seems that they are a league of their own.
Have you ever noticed that it doesn’t matter if a country is wealthy or impoverished, an ambassador always looks dignified, looks….comfortable, well-off ? It seems as though an ambassador is like a nations calling card. The nicer the card, the more impressive the company.
Ambassador is an ancient title. It is a job that has spanned thousands of years. Men from the time of the Bible has this position. Almost every nation that has ever held sway has sent at least one ambassador. Consider an ambassador for a moment. Nearly everyone of them needs to either know someone in power or be extremely good at what they do in order to land the job. You can’t simply hand in a resume and expect to get the position without having an in.
Did you know all followers of Jesus Christ are ambassadors. Yep, that’s right, if you claim to follow Christ, you’ve got the job! “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us…”
Being an ambassador is not about being spiritual mature, it’s not a spiritual gift only given to some. No. If you have followed Christ for a week or for a decade you have the same title…ambassador. God wants to make his appeal through you and through me. You see Christ’s needs his representatives in every nation of the world and his desire is to use you.
Are you willing to be God’s calling card?
How have you had opportunity to be used as God’s calling card lately?
If you could serve as God’s ambassador anywhere in the world…where would you go?