4 Keys For Churches To Reach The Nations
Many of our friends have stories similar to ours: “our sending church was enthused about our calling and our going, they had a special service for us during which they commissioned and sent us, and initially they spoke about visiting us and working with us, but then we rarely ever heard from them again.”
Anyone who has moved from one home to another knows that losing touch is easy — it takes work to stay connected and it is a two-way street. But, it is this connection that is necessary if we are to pursue the Father’s mission as His church.
Assuming that your church is abiding in Christ, that they understand God’s mission and their role in it, and that they are desiring to glorify Father by proclaiming His love to the lost both at home and abroad – then perhaps the best way to mobilize your church is through focused prayer, sharing of the gospel, learning about the world, and connecting to field workers.
Prayer rightly takes the first position of virtually every effort because this establishes our posture before the Lord. If you do not have a heart to proclaim God’s glory in all that you do, or you do not have a heart for those who are lost and dying apart from God’s saving grace, then ask Father to give you that heart – a heart which only He gives.
Share the gospel.
As we go, we are to make disciples. Your church might offer classes on how to share the gospel (your state convention can help), incorporate evangelism training in your community groups, praise the Lord during your Sunday services in regard to those who have faithfully shared, provide reports at church gatherings of how many people heard the gospel that week through church leaders and members, etc…
Learn about the world.
Operation World is a helpful resource for conveying various data pertaining to faith, health, and statistics of Evangelical work worldwide. This is a good resource for community groups to review each time they meet.
Connect to field workers.
Whether your church wants to connect to field workers in a particular country or they desire to connect to field workers from their state/town, your state convention can connect you to workers who are desiring your partnership. You might consider encouraging your community groups or Sunday School classes to connect to field workers as prayer partners — even adopting field workers into your community group and having periodic Skype sessions. Or you might consider your church as a whole connecting with a field worker.
Begin with a simple email to a worker, asking to learn more about the work and the people. Commit to prayer for some period of time, working toward a relationship with the field worker(s) and a growing heart for the people(s).
If appropriate, commit to visiting and working with the field worker for a set period of time, perhaps one or two visits during a commitment period of two or three years. Work toward a commitment to the people group rather than only the field worker so that if the field worker is no longer involved then the people may still be engaged with your church.
Pursue ownership of the work, ownership of your role in the building of the church of Jesus Christ — through His grace alone — among that people. We would love to hear from your church and I’m certain that many of our co-workers would love to hear from you as well as we pursue partnerships for the advancement of His Kingdom, in His grace, for His glory and the eternal joy of the masses living in darkness.
The author of this article DC, and his family serve with the IMB in Southeast Asia.