Those who went, and those who sent (Consecrate18 #20)

Acts 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.

3 And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.

I grew up going to church.  No really, I grew up going to church.  I did not go to church a Sunday or two a month.  My parents had me in church every time the doors were open, and friends the doors to the holiness church I grew up in were open a lot.  We had church Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday morning prayer, Wednesday night church, and Saturday night church.  Besides that, there was the yearly convention, watch night service, Thanksgiving service, and three or four revivals a year.  All told I was in church well over 200 times a year (not including visiting other churches for special meetings).

As a kid that was very churched, I had a few things that really made church great.  There was the evangelist who was extremely tall and would reach up to touch the ceiling above the platform while he preached, there was the campus preacher with his crazy stories, there was the evangelist that jumped a lot, and there were the families that would sing and play instruments with remarkable talent.  And then, there were the missionaries.  They told stories of exotic places, remarkable healings, snakes and jungles, poverty and miracles.  My how I loved the missionaries.

Don’t you?

I mean do you not love when the missionaries come and stir you with there stories and slides of the harvest to be had.  We shed a tear, maybe write a check, and then stop by our Sunday restaurant before we go home for the day.

We usually forget about the missionary, and his mission before we even make we even get our orders given to the waitress.

In the scripture above, we see God calling two men, Barnabas and Saul, to go do mission work.  However, we should understand we have all been called to participate in missions through the Great Commission.  Argue, equivocate, or squirm, but you can not deny the facts; if you are not involved in spreading the gospel around the world, you are in direct disobedience to a command given by Jesus.

“Pastor, there is no way I can go to the mission field.”

Maybe.  Maybe not.  However, if you continue reading you will see that there are not just those who went, there are those who sent.  Understand, sending wasn’t just a pat on the back and a folded map.  The New Testament plainly shows a pattern of financial support for missionaries.  Sending meant equipping for the mission.

What does it say when we can give Netflix twelve bucks a month, the gym gets thirty, Sams or Costco get 40 a year, and Amazon Prime gets 100 a year, but we have not made a monthly commitment to spreading the gospel through missions giving?

What if you cut out that fourth getaway of the year and gave that money to a missionary?

What if one time you went to Ruby Tuesday instead of Ruth Chris and sent the difference to a missionary?

What if you waited a year to buy a new car and sent that down payment to the mission field?

Could you build a church?  An orphanage?  Would your gift change a life?  A family?  A Village?  a Nation?

Today, ask God what He is calling you to do with your abilities and assets in the area of missions for 2018.

Those who went, and those who sent…. Thank God for both!

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