I want to be able to fully explain the call I’m feeling to become a missionary right here, where I live, and to think through exactly what we need to do and what changes we need to make. To do this, I have decided to go through the list I made last week and expand on each item in turn.
Today’s list item is:
A missionary is reminded every day that they are in the mission field just by seeing the people around them. If you’re working in a refugee camp in Africa, it’s hard to forget why you are there.
Could you imagine waking up every day to find out who died of malnutrition or starvation during the night?
Could you imagine wondering exactly what was in the food you were eating and then realizing you’d probably rather not know?
Could you imagine living in a place full of flies and filth and sickness and disease and death, a place where starving children watch their parents die of malnutrition and disease?
Could you imagine going to that place to do what you can to help and then waking up in the morning and forgetting why you’re there?
Of course not!
We may not even be able to imagine what it is like to live in a drought-ridden country where there simply isn’t any food or water or escape but we can know for sure that if we were there, we wouldn’t forget what we were there to do.
The problem we have in the western world is that there is so much prosperity and comfort that it is hard for us to see or imagine that the people around us are desperately in need and that we have the solution to their problem.
It’s time for us to take the blinkers off. Satan has done a wonderful job of pulling the wool over our eyes (couldn’t think of any more metaphor’s). We wanted peace, freedom and prosperity and I believe that he happily gave them to us because he knew that they would serve to deceive us and blind us to the truth.
Somehow, it’s like we just can’t see. The bible makes it quite clear:
If we do not know Christ as our Lord and Savior, if we are not ‘new creations’, as 2 Corinthians 5 puts it, then we are now, and forever will be, cut off from our creator, the source of all love, goodness and peace.
I know that some people debate the theological evidence for ‘an eternity in hell’ but I believe that the bible is quite clear that when we die, we will either go to paradise with God forever or we will be cut off from everything good and will suffer in hell for all eternity.
That is not a nice thought. Not nice at all. Horrible actually. Appalling. Sickening.
Here’s how I propose we take off these blinders that make it so hard for us to remember why we are here:
Whenever you see, meet, speak to or have any form of contact or communication with a non-believer, picture them surrounded by flames, unable to get relief from the heat, thirsty with nothing to drink, hungry with no food, in pain with chance of medication. Then remember that Jesus’ primary teaching was for us to love. Love each other, love the lost, love our enemies, love love love.
Just love that person. Love them with everything you’ve got. Now try loving them without doing everything you can to save them from the flames, the thirst, the hunger, the pain.
The comfort and excess of this current society probably won’t help you remember that you are an ambassador here, a missionary sent to save people from the predicament they are in, so start looking at the world through different eyes, through God’s eyes.
When you do this, when we do this, we’ll see that people are lost, hurting and dying and that every day, in everything we do, it’s our job, our responsibility, our calling to do whatever God gives us to do to help them find Him and be given the free gift of salvation that we have already received.
What say you? Do you find it hard to remember how lost and desperately in need people are?