I’m sure that I’m not the only one who has said repeatedly “Oh I could never…(fill in the blank).” I am fairly certain that I said I could never go into missions, could never live in the jungle, could never translate the Bible for an illiterate people, and so on. (I mean, haven’t you?)
In the same way, it is a very common occurrence for us to tell people that we are going into missions and their reaction is “Oh I could never do that.” My response is “Well neither can I!” Surprisingly, we do not like bugs, I (Stacey) especially hate snakes with a deep hatred, we like the rest of mankind enjoy warm showers, microwaves, paved roads, Doritos and the other conveniences of America. It seems as if people think that you know you’re called to be a missionary when you start liking snakes and since they don’t like snakes then they shouldn’t be a missionary.
Well if that is the case, we definitely aren’t called to the mission field!
There are several truths found in Scripture that have freed my heart from fear and resistance to the mission field. My prayer is that in reading these truths you too would be willing to go to the most dangerous of places. You might be thinking…well I know I am not called to go. I would argue that one cannot know if they are called or not when their hearts are so filled with an unwillingness to be called. My only request is that you ask yourself if you are willing to go.
The truths that have freed my heart (and I pray will free yours!) from anxieties that were keeping me unwilling to go to the mission field are as follows:
1. God’s Grace is Sufficient
2 Corinthians 12:7-10 “… a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Oh what an incredibly freeing passage! The Lord give Paul a “thorn in the flesh” and Paul pleaded with him to take it from him. But the Lord said – no, I won’t take it from you but I will show you that my grace is sufficient for you to bear it. In fact, the Lord’s power is made perfect in weakness. The very fact that there are huge snakes on the mission field, or that we have to leave our families, keeps us weak and dependant on the Lord. And it is at that point that the Lord’s power is revealed. I want everyone to know that there is absolutely nothing special about Dave and I – what is special is the great God who lives inside of us who will be with us wherever we go giving us power to endure hardships, persecutions, calamities, and so on.
2. God has Given me a Spirit of Power, Love, and Self Control
I will NEVER have to say goodbye to brothers and sisters in the Lord ever again
I will NEVER feel pain
I will NEVER feel hunger
I will NEVER sin
I will NEVER have to worry about money
I will NEVER cry
I will NEVER grow old
I will NEVER be mocked for my faith in Christ
I will NEVER get sick
Since my salvation is secure in Heaven, I can endure suffering here on earth because it is only for a short while and it is, “preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison” (2 Cor 4:17)