March 19, 2014 - Global Impact

In the blog It’s Okay To Store Up Our Treasures, we looked at how God rewards us for properly investing the riches He entrusts to us.

African bush, boys in Africa,

But oftentimes we don’t think about anything but money when we consider stewardship. What else is there?

God blesses us in many ways. Some of us have more than others, but all of us in this country have much more than most do in other parts of the world. So the concept of being good stewards of the money God has given to us is easy to understand.

But even more than the funds he allows us to invest for His kingdom, we must remember to be diligent stewards of our time and talents.

It’s easier to put money in the offering plate than to get our hands dirty working on a project to help others, or traveling to a remote region of the world to dig wells, provide food, teach sanitation, or build trust as we tell the lost about Christ.

Our pastor tells of a time when he spoke to a church group years ago about missions. At the end of that time, they thanked him for being diligent in going to remote areas of the world so that they could simply donate money and not have to go themselves.

This is far from what God expects from us. It would be comical if it weren’t tragic. The Great Commission is not a calling, lest some might say, “I am not called.” Rather it is a command by Jesus in Matthew chapter 28 for all of us to:

“Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

The idea of throwing money at this command makes no sense. Neither does the concept of designating it a “calling”, as if some are to do it and others need not. No matter how this passage is read, those conclusions cannot be made in good conscience.

Our time is valuable, sometimes more so than our wealth. It’s difficult to accomplish everything we need to, but that doesn’t excuse us for not giving our time to serve the Lord.

For the coming weeks I will be honored to travel with a group of medical and non-medical Christians—people who don’t have a lot of money, and no extra time.

They’ve raised support to go. They are giving up precious vacation hours or going without a paycheck. They’re risking illness and injury by entering one of the most dangerous, poverty-stricken regions on our planet to carry the Gospel and minister to the needs of people who can never repay them. And although the heat is oppressive and the bugs enormous, they can’t wait to get there.

I am inspired by those around me as they listen to the voice of God and go because He said, “Go.”

It isn’t easy. Jesus never said it would be. He just said He would go too.