Maybe it’s more appropriate to ask the question this way, “Are you a missionary?” Have you been called to go? How does one know if they are called into the mission field? Do those who travel far from their homes wake up one morning with an unquenchable desire to carry the gospel of Jesus Christ where it has not been heard? Are we all called to carry the same gospel everywhere?
It is true, as I believe Mr. Blackaby (Experiencing God) is right when he reveals to his students that our seeing a need is as much as our invitation from God to get involved. What he means is that when we see a neighbor struggling with say a financial difficulty, the allowance for us to see it is our invitation.
So is this how we know if we are called to go? When we look at the statistics of overwhelming proportion that reveal just how large is the masses in our world that have never heard the gospel, and we sense a great burden for these people, is this our call?
Once again, I do believe God uses our emotions to invite us to join Him in His saving of the nations, but I think that is not entirely the truth about “the call.” Consider it for a moment and I think you’ll agree that the seeing of needs is very subjective. One person may still feel there is a great need to get missionaries into a nation like China, while another would see the statistics that show that the gospel has gained significant ground there, with a Christian base now large enough to evangelize and disciple themselves. I’m not saying one thought is right or wrong, just that we are a very subjectively thinking people.
Look at it from another perspective, a person with much wealth might see financial needs that a person with less might not see. We don’t all see needs the same way. We’re very human in that approach.
There is a more efficient way to know of our calling. Paul once said he was compelled by the love of Christ to share the good news of God’s desire to save sinners. The love of our Lord leads us to want exactly what He wants.
The real call to the mission field comes from Jesus Himself, and it is a command to everyone that is His. The Great Commission is meant to be obeyed by every believer. Understanding this places the responsibility of reaching everyone, near and far, on the shoulders of all. In reality, those who travel into far countries are extensions of Jesus’ body showing her ability to stretch. Those who remain home are just as responsible for ensuring the effectiveness of our missionaries as they are responsible for their neighbor next door.
The Great Commission tells me that I’m personally responsible to ensure the gospel is heard across my dinner table, in neighboring schools of my county, in my workplace, in the farthest town of my nation, and into the deepest and darkest corners of God’s world. To be only obedient in some of these areas is to be totally disobedient to the parting command our Lord gave each one of us.
Yes, I believe that everyone is called to be a missionary. It’s the only way we can be fully obedient to Jesus.
Hear our Lord when He says, “While you are going, testify of Me! Tell the world that I’ve come for them too. Reach your children… your family, reach your community, reach your nation and everyone else’s nation. Teach them everything that I’ve taught you.”
Lord, refocus our hearts and minds on the great work You are doing. Let us truly grasp that some of the good things occupying our lives aren’t always the best things, especially in Your Kingdom. Let us shuck off those things that restrict us and hinder us from being who You called us to be. Let us spend and be spent for only one goal, the prize of Your High Calling; Christ Jesus.