Our Motivation

II Corinthians 5:14 explains what I call Gods rescue operation for mankind. The apostle Paul writes that Jesus Christ “died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them, and was raised again.” That, my friend, is the incredible rescue operation that took place on the cross when Jesus died for our sins!

God rescued us from ourselves – you notice it says – so that we would live no longer for ourselves. That really is the main enemy that we face. Satan is an enemy, yes; the world is an enemy, too. But the worst enemy is our very own sinful flesh.

Living for ourselves is selfish living. And selfish living leads us away from Christ. It leads to all sorts of problems in our lives. Yet, thankfully, Jesus Christ freed us from our past, gives us joy in the present, and hope for our future.

So what does this have to do with witnessing? Everything! The love of Jesus – His sacrifice in dying on the cross – is the biggest motivation for us to tell others about Him!

So think about the reality of Gods rescue operation in your own life. Then ask the Lord to help you tell your story — to your world.

Where and Why Should We Go?

I truly believe that God talks through mothers. In my youth, I was waiting for my personal call from God, that moment when the Lord would tell me that evangelism would be my lifes work. Finally, my exasperated mother reminded me that “the call” was made 2000 years ago, and that the Lord was just waiting for my answer. She was right as usual.

Dr. Bill Bright, the founder of Campus Crusade, once said that “an effective witness is someone who takes the initiative to present the claims of Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit- and leaves the results to God.”

As Christians, were all in the missions field. Some of us will travel to distant, often dangerous lands, but most of us will find people hungering for the Good News much closer to home. Either way, we stand in the gap, living out and proclaiming our faith and leaving the rest up to God.

The Apostle Paul was historys greatest missionary, taking the Gospel to much of the known world before planes, trains and automobiles. As he told the Corinthians, “we are speaking for Christ, as though God Himself were making his appeal through us.” That is our task as missionaries, as Ambassadors for Christ, wherever we are.

Just As We Are

As believers we know that God expects us to share the Good News of His love and eternal salvation with others. Some people step out on faith and take Gods word to the world as missionaries. Most Christians never take that step, either in the belief that God is sovereign and doesnt need our help, or – more likely – because we feel we lack the gifts of evangelism.

The truth is that God doesnt care about how gifted or talented or good looking we might be – He only cares that we are obedient. In the early 1900s a young, uneducated parlor maid named Gladys Aylward felt called to preach the Gospel in China. Too poor for the ship fare, she traveled overland by train, then bus, then mule, ending up in the city of Yangchen where no one had ever seen a European.

Over the next two decades and through World War II she shared the love of Christ through tireless service to the Chinese people. Her remarkable story is remembered through books and the movie “The Inn of the Sixth Happiness.”

Whatever our gifts or status in life, God wants us in the missions field, bringing Good News, just as we are. If you have a story about reaching your world as a missionary we would love to hear it. Please drop me a note at radio@palau.org.

The Harvest Great, the Workers Few

Our Lord Jesus saw much suffering as he traveled from town to village during his brief time on earth. “The harvest is large,” He told His disciples,”but there are few workers to gather it in.”

David Livingston, one of historys greatest missionaries, decided at the age of six that he would work for the Lords harvest in Africa. A doctor, a scientist, and explorer, he spent his life in Africa in Gods service. “I have seen the smoke of a thousand villages,” he said,”where the word of God has never been.”

The world today remains filled with villages, towns and cities that hunger to hear the Good News. As we Christians grow in our faith, we just cant keep the Good News to ourselves. Jesus gave us the Great Commission in Matthew 28: “Go, then, to all peoples everywhere and make them my disciples.”

God doesnt ask us for heroic actions like those of David Livingston – only that we be obedient and find our own place in the world to be ambassadors for Christ.

I once met a Peruvian lady in, of all places, a reception hosted by the Royal Family in England. She told me she was in Great Britain for one reason – to harvest British souls for Christ!

The Lord had led her halfway around the world because the harvest was great and the workers were few.

The True Heroes

We live in a society that likes to make heroes of people with great wealth, great power and great looks. For me, the true heroes are those that follow the example of the apostles – the Christian missionaries who sacrifice their personal comforts, resources and safety to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ to the world.

My wife Pat and I have some dear friends named Burt and Colleen Elliott. Burts brother Jim is one of the most honored missionaries of the 20th century – a hero about whom books and movies have been made. Jim was killed, along with several colleagues, by members of the Auca tribe while sharing the Gospel in Peru.

Burt and Colleen have since spent a quiet, unheralded lifetime in that country, planting over 130 churches and training thousands of new believers. They will tell you they have no gifts for evangelizing, yet the impact these two humble people have had in one corner of the world is astounding.

The work of missionaries was celebrated in the Bible centuries ago. “How beautiful on the mountains,” says Isaiah, “are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation.” Burt and Colleen and thousands of others who courageously pursue the Great Commission are the true heroes of yesterday and today.