Yesterday, the Lord met me and imparted something deep into my heart. I want to share it with you.
Over the last 5 years or so, I have been developing a personal philosophy of missions. While I am tempted to borrow linchpins from other people or Organizations (and I will), I have been asking the Lord to reveal to me through his Spirit some personal missiology through experience-- I tend to think those realizations will impact me deeper and stick with me longer. Over time, I will develop and share what I am learning. Here is one such pillar that God has revealed to me on this trip!
God is a master tradesman. I believe that he is pleased in assigning and re-assigning people around the world.
Let me explain more using China and the United States as a case study.
God sending people from America to China: As you know, there is a massive number of people in China who have not met Jesus. For years, America has been preparing and launching people into missions in China. Many people have sacrificed and risked to bring the gospel here. And many lives have been transformed because of it. Entire villages may not have been saved had it not been for the ministry of international missionaries. These servants were called and used of God! And their impact was perhaps even greater BECAUSE they were foreign. The fact that they looked different, talked different, thought different and believed different may have been the very reason that locals perked up and listened-- curiosity of what this stranger was all about. And in that way, God used them to bring new breath and light! And people meet Jesus and are transformed-- which is the heart of missions.
God sending people from China to America: I am American and so I am speaking as such. I am also a Christian and speaking as such. As Tricia and I sat in some of the gatherings this week, something hit us. The people in these gatherings are mainly Pastors, leaders and Chinese brothers and sisters that sense a call on their life for missions. While we were in one of the gatherings, a conversation began and some of the folks were expressing the fear that they would have if they were called to missions work in the USA. They were afraid that they would be unwanted or unneeded. All of the sudden, I felt the Spirit of God speak to my heart with a realization that I knew I had to share with this room of about 100 people. So I did. I said this (which is the thrust of the missions realization I had):
"As we have been with you this week, you have challenged us and inspired us. Your passion for God has convicted our complacency. Your hunger for the Spirit has highlighted our lukewarmness. Your prayer has reminded us of our lack of it. And your worship has made ours look like performance. You have inspired us to love Jesus in a new way. And that is EXACTLY what most of America needs...a fresh passion for the things of God. We say we are Christian, we think we know it all and have it all....none of which is really true! If I could take 25 of you back to our home church, I know that you would inspire us to come alive for Jesus in a fresh way-- something we so badly need! If you Chinese came to us with this passion for God, you would cause more people to meet Jesus and be transformed by him-- which is the heart of missions! So do not fear. You can answer God to GO as he calls you. Will you face challenges? YES! We always do in mission. But the cause is certainly worth it!"
So, there you have it. I believe that God is master trade agent. He has a way of trading people between nations so that he can see the dream he laid out in Matthew 28:18-20 be fulfilled.
Might I recommend that you be in close contact with the master trade agent to see if you are assigned to the right place for the sake of the Kingdom.