You have a role in world-wide missions. Do you know what it is?
For most of my life I have listened to challenges about foreign missions on a regular basis. The speaker usually challenged his listeners to pray, give, or go. This is a great exhortation! For the most part, these speakers "hit the nail on the head" as far as vocational missions are concerned.
I'm thankful for this consistent direction to pray for missionaries, give to their needs and ministries, and to be willing to go when God sends me. I have come to believe this and more. These teachers did encourage all Christians to share their faith. Today I understand more that it is important to focus on training all Christians to be missionaries wherever they reside, work, or build relationships.
Each Christian should observe the needs of people who live around them, whether they are taking part in mundane daily tasks or leading a formal Bible study.
In reality, we should be missionaries in our neighborhoods, places of work, schools, and sporting events - in our own towns before being a foreign missionary is even considered. Simply raising financial support and moving to another geographical location doesn't change who we really are.
We need to develop a close walk with God (I'm working on mine!) and purpose to minister to people with whom we interact in daily life. It is imperative that we know what God's Word says about missions and prayerfully ask God to change our hearts and minds to feel and think as He would have us change.
Ask God to show you where He is working in your community.
Not too long ago my family moved locally. Our previous two houses were situated in a way that didn't encourage community relationships. We were strapped financially and homeschooling. I found it very easy not to put forth the effort needed to build strong relationships. This bothered me, and God was working on my heart.
Last fall the LORD opened up an opportunity for us to move - on a street away from constant traffic and full of families of various races and cultures. Right around the time that we were looking into this homes, our church began to study hospitality in depth. God has begun to open our eyes to the opportunities around us. Nearly every night I look out on our neighborhood to pray for open hearts with which to share Jesus. Already I have seen God working, and we are developing relationships. Time will tell the great work that God will do. (We call this Missional Living. Check out our post, "Missional Living? What is it?")
Pray and work to lift up Jesus, so that those around us see Him.
For the time, this is the role that God has for our family in the Great Commission. Jesus commanded us to go and teach all nations. The homes surrounding us are a part of all the nations of the world.
As I see the role for me in missions, I need to grow an unselfish heart. I am asking God to help me to grow in friendship and love toward those around us. I am praying for wisdom as I share the Good News with those who have not heard.
Is your role similar to mine or is God calling you and your family to move to another country to share His love? I would love for you to share what you believe is your role in Christian missions.