This weekend I had the opportunity to go to Kentucky and meet with the elders and the church that is supporting our trip to Africa. First and foremost I have to say that I am so grateful that the Lord put these people into our path because they are such an incredible congregation. The Lord shines through the people and I could not be happier to be a part of the work they are doing. But while I was there I got asked a simple question: why do you want to do mission work?
My entire life I have been raised to help people. Every morning before school as mom would drop us off she would tell us to make sure that we helped someone. It didn’t matter how; it could be giving someone a pencil or listening to someone’s problems, just as long as we made it a point to do something for someone else.
As Christians I think it is easy to get comfortable. Especially when things are going our way. God does not call us to be hearers of the Word only, we are called to be doers. (James 1:22) No, that does not mean that everyone has to travel across the world and live in a third world country for six months or a year. The mission field is everywhere. In our own communities, in our own country, and around the globe.
Jesus tells us to let everything we do be done in love. But this love isn’t just a feeling we have for someone. It’s not just forgiving a loved one who hurts us. Love is treating other people the way that Jesus would. It is a verb. It is putting other people first. It is giving God all the glory. God is love. If we are not doing everything for Him, if He does not come first, how can anything we do be done by love?
I read a quote somewhere that said God does not call the qualified, He qualifies the called. But we are all called. We are all qualified through Him. We are commanded to go into the world and proclaim the gospel to everyone. (Mark 16:16) If God puts this path into my life, tells me just like He told His disciples to leave everything and follow Him, then that is exactly what I will do. I’m a worry wart and scared of my own shadow. So do I have fears? Yes. But if God is for me who can be against me? (Romans 8:31) I’ll leave you with this quote from Katie Davis, a woman who left everything to move to Uganda to the Lord’s work:
“It may take place in a foreign land or it may take place in your backyard, but I believe that we were each created to change the world for someone. To serve someone. To love someone the way Christ first loved us, to spread His light. This is the dream, and it is possible.”
So that is my answer. Be radical. Be a light. Be the change.
– Samantha Edwards