As little children, we dream of doing great things with our lives. As young adults, we dream of finding fame and fortune. As we get older, we dream of living a more peaceful life and of someday retiring.
But what does God dream?
“‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares YHVH, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope'” (Jeremiah 29:11).
God isn’t on our timetable. He is not limited by the span of time we call life. Therefore He urges us to begin to view life as He does.
For a thousand years in Your sight
Are like yesterday when it is past,
And like a watch in the night.
You carry them away like a flood;
They are like a sleep.
In the morning they are like grass which grows up:
In the morning it flourishes and grows up;
In the evening it is cut down and withers. (Psalm 90:4-6)
Life is temporary, yet we tend to think we’ll be on earth forever. That’s why we procrastinate, deciding that we’ll serve God better tomorrow — when the bills are paid, the children are grown, the aches and pains are gone.
Before Yeshua went back to heaven, He gave his disciples a mission. “You shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth,” He commanded.
Specifically, they weren’t to just get people to “pray a prayer.”
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:19-20).
Their mission is ours also! I believe we need to view the world around us as our “mission field,” and sharing Yeshua our “job,” and teaching them to obey His instructions our “curriculum.”
Keeping a Balance
Notice, however, that this mission is Priority #6 on the list. I think that most problems occur when this mission to the world is bumped too high or too low on the priority list. For some people, teaching the Scriptures with those who don’t know God is not a priority at all! Some would never admit it, but their actions say that a career or a home in a certain location or a desire to “take it easy” are higher priority to them than reaching out to lost people headed for an eternity in hell. For others, sharing Yeshua has become top priority, even over taking time to invest in their own families or even to cultivate a consistent, daily, close relationship with their heavenly father.
Let’s check ourselves:
- Are we careful to be in God’s Word daily, reading devotionally and studying extensively?
- Second, are we careful to minister to our spouse?
- Thirdly, do we schedule the necessary time to be involved in our children’s lives?
- Fourthly, as women do we ensure that our homes are sanctuaries of peace and love for our families by keeping them clean and managing our households?
- Next, are we plugged in to a local assembly of believers, both learning from the older women and ministering to the younger women?
Only if we can answer these questions correctly are we ready to reach out to the lost!
Why? Because character speaks more than words. Because the world is watching how well you submit to your husband, how well-behaved your children are, how well you take care of your home and how loving you are to your brothers and sisters in your local congregation. If you have nothing unique and different to offer, why should they listen to you brag about your God?
Making It Practical
So how do we reach out to the world? First, God has given you a unique circle of influence. You are acquainted to a set of people in a way that no one else is. How exciting! I believe that you should begin by being a missionary to your next door neighbor before you branch out to the heathen tribes of Africa. Why throw away those valuable relationships?
Second, God has given you unique areas of giftedness. Can you bake an unbeatable loaf of banana bread? Allow God to use that skill to build bridges with the lost. Can you put together an awe-inspiring scrapbook? Sew doll clothes? Whip up to-die-for lasagna? Play the guitar? Brainstorm ways that you can use your gifts to build relationships.
Building relationships takes time. Maybe your schedule can reflect the priority of reaching the world by including a time each week where you open your home in hospitality to your unsaved acquaintances. Playing “Trivial Pursuit” together week after week will allow them to see that you’re different (you are, aren’t you?), and eventually you’ll have the opportunity to share why.
Finally, spend much time before God, asking Him if your goals and plans for your life match His. Missionary Don Washer wrote,
“I have but one candle of life to burn. I would rather burn it out where people are dying in darkness, rather than in a land that is flooded with light.”
“How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, who bring glad tidings of good things!'” (Romans 10:14-15).
Is the world a priority to you?
- Would you like to know what your spiritual gifts are?