I’ve always realized that the results and successes of mobilizing harvest laborers –church planters, as we call them, aren’t dependent upon me as a mobilizer. It must be a work of the Spirit drawing God’s workmen into harmony with His purpose to declare Christ to the nations. ‘Nations’ meaning ethnicities or those we identify as ones unengaged with the gospel. But ‘what’ I communicate to churches and individuals about the need does have effect upon the hearers in understanding the immensity of the task at hand, and that it calls for great sacrifice and commitment just as Jesus spoke about in Luke 9, verses 3-6; 23-26; and 57-62.
Our founders had a vision for reaching the world: “By unflinching determination we hazard our lives and gamble all for Christ until we have reached the last tribe regardless of where that tribe might be.”
That’s a far-reaching vision. A vision that represents God’s heart for the world. A vision that’s worth our getting passionate about and working together to make it a reality.
That vision hasn’t changed, but the world has. We are faced with new challenges and we are learning to face them together, relying upon God to unite His people to overcome them for His glory.
I would love to flood the unreached fields of the world with those who will carry the gospel to these hard to reach locations but the impact of that vision is dependent upon the church and her focus to equip and send forth laborers. I’m merely a catalyst coming alongside the church to rally the call to Jesus’ command to make disciples. Sadly, in many places, the church has substituted the commission with ‘programs,’ thus the downturn in equipping those who will finish the task.
I recently reviewed a video of a thriving tribal church; one whose focus and vision reflects ongoing evangelism & discipleship, and the equipping & sending of laborers to unreached areas. The following comment was made by an observer who said “You know, I believe if the strength of the church should be judged by its young and its old, then it is my conclusion we should be the learners and the tribal church our teachers.” Might we sharpen our perspective accordingly.