Day 6, July 22. Worms, Germany
Today we catch a flight to Croatia where we will spend 5 days in challenging ministry, followed by a day in Budapest. From Budapest we fly home through Frankfurt, Germany, on July 28.
As I write these updates, I find my mind turning to you, the reader. This inclination is reinforced by the many and varied responses I receive from a number of the recipients. Some are mothers and homemakers, others are government employees, one is a flight attendant, a few are retired, some are in fulltime ministry, while others work in IT, the medical field, or radio. A true cross-section.
Two things tend to characterize these individuals: (1) a passion for Christ to be made known in all places at all times to all peoples; (2) frequent uncertainty that the daily tasks assigned to me have anything to do with fulfilling the Great Commission. And lest I appear to be exalting “the missionary” and the missionary role unduly, I want to say that I am aware of the crucial part each person plays in the big mosaic of world evangelism.
A young mother wrote me today in response to these updates. She said: “I am blessed to have this reminder as I wipe and spank butts, that our gracious God is at work in my little world and also among the nations.”
That is reality. How easy it is to forget that the changing of that diaper, the cooking of a meal, speaking to a customer or making a delivery or chatting with our neighbor is the vital role we are called to play in God’s cosmic plan.
When we are involved in the “dailyness” of life and going about the tasks God has called us to, some things just seem mundane, even meaningless.
Elisabeth Elliot had a way of putting the “menial” tasks in context: “”This job has been given to me to do. Therefore, it is a gift. Therefore, it is a privilege. Therefore, it is an offering I may make to God. Therefore, it is to be done gladly, if it is done for Him. Here, not somewhere else, I may learn God’s way. In this job, not in some other, God looks for faithfulness.” What a great perspective!
Do you believe today that the things on your agenda are the work of mission? That you have been called to do the tasks assigned to you today? Are you convinced that not even illness or affliction can prove to be an impediment to God carrying out his work through you?
I will close with the profound thought of John Henry Newman: “God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission. Therefore, I will trust Him. Whatever, wherever I am, I can never be thrown away. If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve Him; in perplexity, my perplexity may serve Him; if I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve Him. My sickness, or perplexity, or sorrow may be necessary causes of some great end, which is quite beyond us. He does nothing in vain.”
Go wash dishes and change diapers and fix computers to the glory of God!