Sunday morning we had the privilege of hearing a young lady who recently returned from her DTS outreach to a fairly closed nation in southeast Asia. As she shared her stories, I was so encouraged in hearing all that God not only did in her brief time there, but also just in general in that particular nation. I was also reminded of a testimony that a man shared a few months ago at church regarding the crisis of civil war in the Middle East. He shared how christians there aiding the refugees were able to feed and provide daily essentials to over 7000 individuals, and as a result over 1000 came to Christ. in both short examples I sees how God is using what seemingly looks like the worst situations for His purposes and glory. In southeast Asia, in the midst of persecution, the church continues to grow underground. God is using the believers to spread His message in daily life, as well is in government structures. In the Middle East, in the midst of horrific cvil war, God is using believers there to reach the muslim world for Christ.
I am reminded of the words of Jesus in Matthew 9:37-38 where He shows how the harvest is plentiful and the laborers few. These two short stories remind me of the importance of responding to those words even today 2000 years after they were spoken. God uses those willing to be used, even in the most impossible situations. God is seeking those willing and able, all we need to do is to respond and see God move thorough us. I generally like to daily read the news on around 5 or so different sites, and the general takeaway is that this world is a terrible place, and that it may soon come to an end, I read nothing but negativity and eventually it becomes a belief if I am not careful. I take for granted being involved in a missions organizations where I often hear positive stories not seen in the media of how God is moving in the nations, and want to encourage you that like the two stories above, God is moving and the nations are coming to Him at a greater rate then ever before.
There is no success in ministry without sacrifice. If we truly want to be used and see God’s will be done in us, and those around us at our jobs, community, or church we must be willing to give it all for Him. I am constantly challenged by this, and find myself often times reserved and unwilling to give my all to Him. But, I am encouraged and challenged by these testimonies to take every moment captive for Christ, and know that God uses those willing and that there is no greater reward then responding to His calling in whatever capacity that looks like in the individuals life.
I hope you are both encouraged and challenged by these stories and will continue to seek first His kingdom, and know that God is in control and moving in the nations!