Living in the Presence of God

“Therefore go and make discipes 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 comanded you.  And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

 – Matthew 28:19-20

In my experiences with missions, i have seen many different people from around the world ministering to the community of God and to the world around them.  I have worked beside some amazing people, through Catholic Heart Work Camp (CHWC) in Va. Beach, Philly and Baltamore, Crossing Boarders in Honduras, Summer Staff up at Young Life’s Saranac Village, and on the campus of Anderson University.  But in all those experiences, i have learned that missions does not always mean physical labor.

While most missions trips consist of sending people out somewhere and they work in the community to provide something for people, the most effective missions are when believers go out into their own communities and serve those in need, even if that means just sitting and listening to someone talk for hours on end, or sitting in silence, just physically being there for someone who needs the comfort of presence in their life.

By no means am i saying that missions trips that consist of physical labor are not helpful in building the Kingdom of God.   Sometimes all that a community needs is to know they are loved and to know they have someone who is willing to help them in the time of need.

Take, for example, the two years that i helped out putting in a water supply system in Honduras with Crossing Boarders.  In reality, we could have sent money over and the water supply system would be put in anyways, but instead 8-9 of us went down to the outskirts of Concepcion de Maria and the surrounding community and dug trenches along side of them, laid down pipe, and covered it over again.  They could have easily done this without us, but to see them smile and laugh as we worked along side of them, that made the experience. 

Both, we and they knew that it would have been done if we were there or if we stayed at home, but they were honored to have us working beside them.

Or, take working with Summer Staff the past two summers up at Young Life’s Saranac Village.  A completely different experience with completely different people.  It was there, as i served high school campers for a month, that i realized that sometimes being in the presence of people and living your life in a Godly way is more powerful than serving the campers snacks at the Snack Shack or putting them through the ropes course. 

Yes, we were there to serve the campers, but we also lived with four groups for a week at a time.  In seeing people live as Christians, high school campers saw what it ment to be Christians.  Sometimes that is more powerful than any words a speaker can say in a week. 

God has called all of us to missions.  To call yourself a Christian and deny this is to turn your back on all you believe.  This may not mean spending two months in India for your summer vacation, or spending you spring break living with the homeless in Baltamore, Philidelphia, or DC.  It may just mean living your life as a constant example of God’s Grace.  It’s different for each of us, because God calls each and every one of us to a different way of serving.

God has called me to Africa, to serve in Uganda this summer.  He has called my brother to Guatemala.  Friends to Kenya.  To Italy.  To Anderson, SC. 

Some interpretations of the original texts of the Bible translate the Great Commission as “As you go…”  It doesnt matter where you go, God has called you to serve.

God Bless and PEACE

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1 Comment »

  1. I really love what you’re saying here, that to claim to be a follower of Christ is to follow Christ into the Great Commission. As a person trying to live out the Kingdom of God, and a fellow-traveler on The Way, I really appreciate your commitment to living out God’s Grace. Thanks for blogging your journey. It’s a great source of encouragment, probably for more people than you know. Blessings on the journey and peace.


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