This morning I woke up early to a view of the Manhattan skyline in New York City. It was moving. I spent my time with Jesus staring at the city. I prayed over New York…and America. I felt like I grabbed a glimpse of God's heart after asking him for it. As you may know, I grew up in America. But, I now live in Africa where I serve in missions. We work for Jesus. We try to do what he asked us to do. Sometimes we get it right. Sometimes we do not.
After two years of living in Africa, my family and I are spending 6 weeks in our home country, the United States of America. While here, we have been speaking with groups of Christians ranging from 3-1,000 sharing about our work in hopes of their support and partnership with us in faith, friendship and funding.
While sharing about missions in Africa, I have had something I thought was true be reinforced.
America is a difficult mission field. Sure, there are challenges in Africa. There would be enemy resistance anywhere we are advancing God's purposes. But, America seems to be an especially difficult place. Time and time again over these last few weeks, I have had people look at me with fear in their eyes and say: "Where would I even start?" Going to the lost, engaging them, discipling them and gathering them seems like foreign concepts for only a foreign land.
Yes, this is a hard land. The love of money, success and self mixed with the rusty witness of the gospel emerging from many of her churches are just some of the contributing dynamics.
Yet, there is reason for great hope!!! Why? Because people are asking "where do I start"? Because there is so much hunger for something real, relational and eternal that you can almost taste it in the air. Because the private, distant, individualistic way in which many people come across is really only an indicator that there is enough pain present to welcome healing. Because there are many "Christians" all over this great land that are dissatisfied with church as it has been that will join the army of disciple makers that is raising up. Because there is enough generosity and passion and resource within the borders of America to shock whole nations with grace and love. Because the Holy Spirit is brilliantly at work in the hearts of many, many people raising them up to be more interested in making disciples than starting churches.
And because YOU have what it takes to be a gospel sowing, kingdom builder right where you are right now. If you live in America and claim Jesus as your savior, you have call to missions in America. Go for it, Missionary!