In the past 25 years of ministry, I've been asked this question quite a bit. 'Why do missions? Why go overseas and serve when there is so much need right here in our community? In our own country?' Great question!!!
All of Jesus' words are important. However, you would think that since these were some of his last words that they might carry some extra weight. What did he say?
He says to tell everyone and to go everywhere. That means churches reach across the street and across the world. That means that followers of Jesus live out their faith in corporate America, on the soccer fields, while on vacation in New York and traveling to feed hungry kids in Latin America. Everywhere! There really is no great good argument that we can make that dismisses Jesus' global vision and challenge to all of us.
However, let's imagine for a moment that the first followers of Jesus downplayed this. Minimized it. Rationalized it away like many followers of Jesus do today. Imagine that they said this, 'You know, Jesus can't be serious about everywhere. That's too much. Let's just focus on our community. Let's engage in our neighborhoods and see how that goes. Maybe one day, we can do that 'everywhere' thing he talked about.' What if that really happened?
Let's take that thinking and apply it personally for a moment. If the disciples had taken that position and kept the gospel to themselves then how would you know Jesus? Your kids? Your family? Your co-workers? If those original followers balked on that great vision, again like we have a propensity to do, where does that leave you and I? Without Jesus. For centuries, starting with the men who followed Jesus, countless people have had the courage, the faith and the obedience to live Jesus EVERYWHERE.
So why not me? Why not us? Why not Turning Point Church? Let's make is clear. We will!
With that said, we are making plans now to back head to Alajuelita, Costa Rica to serve as part of The Go Project 2017. So, if you are interested in serving, stretching yourself, making a difference and following the vision of Jesus, go for it!!!