Curriculum here at orientation feels like drinking from a fire hose at this point in time. Lots of information. I’m just trying to soak up as much as possible. Usually the day is planned so that there is a balance between theological, bible study, and evangelical sessions, paired with logistical sessions that cover stuff like healthy living and salary and benefits and other boring things. The other day we spent the morning talking about finding a person of peace, someone receptive to the message, who will be a cultural bridge by which we bring the message to those in their sphere of influence. That afternoon we discussed the dangers of animal bites that lead to rabies. And the perils of traveller’s diarrhea.
So yeah, lots of variety.
One thing that has really stuck with me has been the role of the church in all of this. Historically, the message that missionaries have given the churches here in the USA has been “Pray, pay, and stay out of the way.”
Leave this to the professionals. With seminary degrees.
WRONG WRONG WRONG.
The Great Commission wasn’t a suggestion for the more zealous of Christians. It was the command by which God is building his church. And whether or not you’re going overseas to do it, I hope and pray that you are going out of your way to share the message of the gospel with those around you. It’s easy to get sucked into the short-term, immediate things and forget about the eternal. I know. But it’s oh so important.
And so as I get ready to go, I hope you know that it is not my intention that you, my friends at home, would just pay, pray, and stay out of the way. If it were a matter of resources, there would never be enough. It’s not about resources. It’s about involvement.
I’m not doing a job so that you won’t have to. I’m not asking the church to join me here on my personal task. I’m asking the church to let me be a part of its task, to extend it to Argentina. Maybe I’m different because missions is my nine to five, but guess what?
The job is ours.
Of course I want you to pray for me. But more than that, I would love for you to come along for the ride. We are loved and there is hope. This message is too precious to keep to ourselves. So let’s not!