Friday, April 16, 2010

a tough question

Last night, I took part in a conference call for Operation Christmas Child volunteers from the central Mississippi area.  The plan is for us to do these once a month just so that we can stay connected and share ideas and such.  When I received the agenda for the call via e-mail, I quickly scanned through it and set it aside.  I did read the "Intro Question" but didn't stop at that moment to think about it.  It wasn't until Frances (our area coordinator) asked the question, and then chose me to pick on answer first, that this question really hit home with me.

What one way will you personally increase Gospel Opportunities in 2010?

I gave an answer with some things I have planned through our relay center and, at the time, it sounded okay.  But after the call had ended I really started thinking.  Of course, the Gospel Opportunities she was referring to are shoeboxes.  Each shoebox represents at least one person who will have the opportunity to hear the Good News, and in some cases each shoebox could reach up to 10 people.  This is what motivates me to personally pack as many boxes as I can and to encourage others to do the same and I will continue doing that very thing this year.

But, this question hit home with me in a different way as well.  As much as I love the ministry of Operation Christmas Child, I can't help but wonder if it fulfills my personal responsibility to reach the world around me.  No matter how many shoeboxes I touch each year, I cannot personally share the gospel with even one of the children who will receive those boxes.  Knowing this makes me thankful for the words of 1 Corinthians 3:7 ~ So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

Please don't misunderstand me.  I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that God has called me to do what I do with the shoebox ministry.  As a matter of fact, there have been few times in my life when I have been so sure that what I am doing is what God has called me to do.

But that question up there has been like a beacon flashing in my head since last night and it forces me to ask another question:  what does God want me to do in my own back yard to personally share the Gospel with the people that I can see and touch and talk to?  The truth is,  I don't have an answer to that question ... at least not yet.

Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.  Matthew 7:7-8

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.  Matthew 28:19-20


Rie said...

He wants you to do anything within your power.

That is where we all fail. There is so much more within my power than I claim.

We Christians are so guilty of excuses, my favorite being, "I'm not good at that." That's like me blaming God for not blessing me with the talent to tell others.

He commanded us to tell. There is not anything He commands of us that He does not equip us for.

Yes, our testimony is in our actions and love for one another, but more is demanded of us than just that. We are to tell.

We should all be as you and be searching for the direction He wants us to take in spreading His gospel and love.

KTElltt said...

Girl, I have been marinating on the same thing since our missions conference. The speaker talked about how he hated only referring to foreign missionaries as missionaries because Jesus called us all to be missionaries wherever we are. So true. I have found myself more and more aware of how many souls there are around me weekly. How can I be sure they know Christ? No other way than to strike up a conversation and ask simple questions that just might lead to an encounter where I can share the gospel. I also love that though I may stumble and falter, the Holy Spirit causes the growth and I don't have to be perfect -- just willing...

Greg and Donna said...

I think you can only do as much as the Lord calls you to do. Don't worry about what others are doing or compare yourself to anyone else. The Lord call different people for different things. I am also a firm believer in Moms are Missionaries at home. The Lord has called us to minister to our husbands and children, so when your children are older, he may have more "far reaching" missions for you. Operation Christmas Child is an awesome ministry that touches thousands of lives each year. I'm thrilled that you are involved with this and that we get to help every year!