To the regions beyond! (2 Corinthians 10:16)
Dear Fellow Preacher,
I know I’m ‘preaching to the choir’ when I talk about Missions, but I would like to share a couple of thoughts from my heart to yours.
I think we all pretty much agree that the Great Commission is the job of every church, no matter where they are located. But I think you’ll agree that some of us have little zeal for Missions, while others emphasize it more.
Is there any practical ‘benefit’ to emphasizing Missions in our churches?
I believe there are many benefits and blessings to a church that is zealous for Missions. Why? Because it is the very heart-beat of God that people be saved. 2 Peter 3:9, The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. After all, this was the VERY reason the Son of Man came (Luke 19:10).
I have discovered that when I emphasize Missions, God returns the favour and emphasizes my church! I can tell you that as a direct result of Missions, my church has experienced significant growth.
But it wasn’t always this way. For a number of years, we supported missionaries, but we weren’t all that zealous about it. When we got to about 12 missionaries, we couldn’t grow it anymore – the money just wasn’t coming in. So, I brought in Pastor Ron Storz, whose church supports hundreds of missionaries. Bro. Storz came for 2 Sundays and preached 6 of the best sermons I had ever heard on Missions. God moved amongst the people, and we took on six more missionaries that year!
Every year since I would have Bro. Storz come and preach until his health failed him, and then I took over the preaching myself. And every year God has steadily allowed us to increase our support of Missions. God has laid a goal on my heart to support 100 missionaries, and, within the next 2 years, we hope to reach that goal.
There are far too many details to share in this little column, but here are a couple of thoughts:
- Emphasizing Missions helps your local Soul Winning program. They feed each other.
- Start preaching on Missions at least 2 Sundays before your Missions Conference (if you have one).
- Ask people to fast and pray for God’s Missions-Blessings, at least one meal each week.
- Only put up first-class looking Missions decorations. We keep ours up all year long.
- Try to bring in 2 or 3 missionaries to speak at your Conference (ours is Wed. – Sun.)
- On the Sat., we have our people prepare food from different countries for a potluck.
- Encourage your people to ‘adopt’ a missionary (to pray for them daily). It keeps them mindful.
- Chart your monthly Missions offerings on the wall so people can see what’s happening.
If you have a great idea for Missions, I’d love to hear from you!
Stay in the game!
Your brother in Christ,
Steven J. White
I’d like to invite any Independent Baptist preacher (pastor, missionary, evangelist, or retired) to offer helpful advice, experiences and thoughts that will encourage others in the ministry. I want others to hear what you have to say. If this is of interest to you, please email me your thoughts or suggestions. None of us will get ‘paid’ for any of this, but all of us will get ‘sharpened’.