Willing or Waiting?

As followers of Christ we were given the greatest commandment to go and make disciples of all nations, including our own. Our country is as lost as ever and it’s our response as Christians to love the hurting. Unfortunately most of the American church has become content with a pew bound Christian lifestyle rather than an action bound Christian life. We can get comfortable in only receiving in services to survive through our week to get filled again on Sunday morning. But may I ask what are we being filled for? If our only goal is to be filled to stay saved throughout our week we have missed the point of God pouring out His presence in our lives.  If we read in Acts and throughout the New Testament the real reason Christians assembled together weekly was to be empowered to reach the lost and meet the needs of the hurting. Acts 4:31-34, states that right after they had received the power of the Holy Spirit the believers went to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the lost in their city.

“After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.”– Acts 4:31-34
Outreach and missions is something our church (Faith Assembly) is constantly encouraging us to engage in because it’s the core of our DNA as Christians, to want to love others. This is our calling, to love the lost near and far.

There is something about pausing your schedule to pour into another person’s life. Not only have I seen God do great things in other’s lives but I’ve also gotten my biggest revelations and breakthroughs on a mission trip. In 2015, I went to the LA dream center with the Voice. This was my very first time on a mission trip. I was as equally terrified as I was excited. My biggest fear was that I couldn’t bring anything valuable to the trip. I wasn’t a performer, I was scared to talk to people, and I didn’t exactly what I was getting myself into. But what I came to realize was that I didn’t have to be anything but myself. God showed me that there was more inside of me than I had ever known. Pushing past my fears and insecurities, I arrived home from my first mission trip with a new perspective of myself and God’s design for my life. This sparked a passion in me to continue to serve even when I felt inadequate. Over the past three years, I’ve also been able to serve in New York, Spain, Nicaragua, and New Orleans. Each time was as terrifying as the first but God continued to reveal new things in my life and use me to impact others. What I’ve learned from all of this is that Missions is for every Christian. Not just people called to the nations. Honestly, everyone is called to live a missions driven life. Our greatest purpose is to love others, who have never experienced the gospel, to meet their physical and spiritual needs, and build them up in Christ. Realizing this purpose sparked in me a greater burden for my own city, my own family, and my own country.

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Missions is important. Global missions especially. According to the Joshua Project, there are 1.4 billion people who are considered to be in unreached people groups. An unreached people group is a population of people who have never had contact with the gospel and have 0-0.1% of a Christian Population. All that is needed is a generation to rise up to the call even if it’s just for a week. In Isaiah the author writes,

 

“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

– Isaiah 6:8

 

The word that stuck out to me as I was reading this verse was the word “will”. Who is willing to go? That’s the biggest question God is asking our generation. Are we willing? Despite our fears and insecurities are we willing. We don’t have to be the best speaker, the best at conversations, best dancer, best singer, or even the best Christian to be used by God to change lives. We just have to be willing. The enemy wants us to stay scared because he knows a fearless Church in this broken world would bring a revival of healing that he can’t tame. I know maybe your scared, feel too busy, or you think you have to be saved longer before being used but give this a thought. I wondering how many people have yet to feel content with their lives because they have yet to start living despite their fear. They have yet to really trust God because their fears are too great or it’s too much money to give. Can I let you in on a secret? I still have fears. It’s still a lot of money. But I refuse to let it control my actions because I know whom I serve. He has showed up every time. God has revealed new gifts in me that I didn’t even know I had for ministry. The past three years of mission trips have taught me that being missions minded isn’t about a call. It isn’t about talent. Missions is first and foremost about being willing to be used, financially, physically, and spiritually by God. We can see this throughout the New Testament. In Acts 9, Paul was saved and immediately sent to spread the gospel. His willingness was an open door to be used greatly throughout the NT. In 1 Corinthians 16, there is a story of a couple, Priscilla and Aquila, who owned a tent company. They were willing to help Paul financially and this act helped build the church of Corinth and they assisted Paul in equipping others for ministry throughout the rest of the beginning of the Church.

 

For a long time I prayed to have a bigger burden for the lost but it wasn’t until I took action that the passion was planted in my heart. So I want to challenge you. Before you decide missions is for everyone else, go to an Outreach Cadence this week, and join H2O on Friday or Love Orlando on Tuesday. Before you decide that giving to missions is for those who have a burden for it, go ahead and try it. Give and watch how your heart will break for the lost. Lastly, before you think missions is just for those “called to the nations” I challenge you to go on a mission trip, sign up for Love Week in March. Even if you’re called to be a doctor, or a teacher, or a lawyer, missions opens our eyes to the spiritual needs around us in our daily lives. It teaches us to listen to the Holy Spirit’s whisper and not our fear. Who knows maybe the spark to save our city may just ignite in us when we step out and answer, “Here I am, send me”.

Samantha Perkins

 

Samantha Perkins

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