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Posts Tagged ‘missions’

I can remember growing up in the organized church being told all the things I needed to do to be a good Christian.

I think most of us who were part of the church were taught we needed to do certainly things to be pleasing to God.

We were all told that we are saved by grace, but after that we have to do, do, do to be good Christians.

What are We to Do

Usually the first thing we are told after coming to Christ is to find a Bible believing church, read your Bible, and witness to your friends. As we got involved in church we were again told to be at church whenever the doors are open, tithe your ten percent, get involved in a small group, do visitation, go on a mission trip, and on and on it went.

To be a good Christian, you can forget about grace because it all depends on how much you can do for God, at least that is the way it seems if you listen to others.

Always being told how to be a good Christian also brings up the thought that if you do not do all the things you are told you should do, then maybe you will be considered a bad Christian, and none of us want to be known as a bad Christian.

So what do we do? We try even harder to do all the things we were told to do to be a good Christian.

I think there are so many people who love God, yet feel so guilty because they just cannot measure up to being a good Christian, at least in the way that we have been told.

Grace

It is time we reprogram our minds from what the church told us and focus again on what God has told us. We are saved by grace, NOT OF WORKS. Ephesians 2:8-9 reads .. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

No More Guilt

We can stop feeling guilty about not doing enough. We need to stop listening to the do, do, do message and realize God has already done it all. God has done all that is needed to have a relationship and fellowship with Him. It is a gift from Him to us.

Good works will naturally flow from us through the love and power of the Spirit, not by our own effort trying to measure up and do things to earn God’s acceptance.

In Christ, we can relax and rest in Him. We do not have to worry about being a good Christian or a bad Christian. We can know that we are loved and accepted by our Father just as we are.

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As Christians, we have been told that it is our duty to go into the world and preach the gospel.

For my wife and me, that has always meant we were to go to other countries and tell the gospel message to those who have never heard the good news.

We began to feel if we did not go on a mission trip to some other part of the world, we were not fulfilling the command to preach the gospel in all the world.

Yet, we never had a real desire or felt a ‘calling’ to go to another country. At first we felt a little guilty, like we were not doing our part.

After thinking and praying about it, we came to realize that not everyone is called to go to other countries to preach the gospel. Personally, I believe we are all to be ready to give an account of our belief and hope in God to anyone who asks. Yet I do not believe all of us are called to go to other countries, or participate in mission trips.

AllMissionaries

After getting involved with a local ministry at a major college in our town, we came to find a way that felt good to us to help reach the ‘world’ with the gospel. It is called International Friendships. I imagine most major colleges across the United States has this ministry to the international students. It is a Christian based ministry that gets other Christians involved with the international students coming here to attend college. They also provide home groups to learn about faith in God and a Friday night meeting when all groups join together for food and fellowship.

My wife and I got involved and thought it was a great program. International students come here to attend college, get hooked up with Christian friends, they hear the gospel message, then go back to their home countries and tell the gospel message to their own people.

For us this was a more meaningful way than trying to go to a foreign land and talk to people about Christ. We certainly have no problem with those who feel called to go on mission trips and give the gospel message. We also know that not everyone is called to do so.

On my job, I go into homes every day I work and see conditions that could be considered third world living conditions. It is hard to believe, but here in the United States, there are many who have not heard the true gospel message. They may have heard that we should attend a church, give our money, do good things and they have heard we are not do a list of many things. Yet, to hear about and actually see God’s love in action, they really do not know anything about it.

For us, we would actually feel bad if we paid a lot of money and gave our time to go to another country and tell others of the love of God when we know for a fact there are just as many right here in our home town that need to hear the same gospel message.

We are so thankful for people who are called to go to other countries and preach the gospel. Yet for us, we do not have that calling and we are content to stay right here and do the same thing by showing God’s love to all those we meet.

If any of you feel called to go on a mission trip to another part of the country or to a different country all together…..go. If you do not feel the calling to go on a mission trip, please, do not feel guilty. Jesus is building his church out of living stones, us, and each of us has a different calling and purpose to fulfill. Do not feel bad if your calling is different from another’s calling. Each of us are equally important parts of the body of Christ with a job to do. Not a job to earn our way, but a job that Christ will do through us to further his purpose and show the love of God.

YouareHere

Whether your mission field is in some far away land, or if it is your daily routine where you live and work, God lives within us and will touch others with his love. Be ready to give an answer of the hope within you when asked. Show the love of God to everyone you meet during your day, wherever you are at the time.

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