Here I Am. Send Me.
I’m not going to let the fact that I’m still single stop me any longer from becoming a missionary!” said a young lady who had several conversations with us and Malachi and Adalia Coal at the European Youth Congress.
“Who knows who you might meet, either during the training and fundraising phase or out in the mission field?” I said. “The main thing is that if you sense God calling you to become a cross-cultural missionary, you respond positively and let Him sort out the details.”
“I’m still single and earning good money, and yet I sense God calling me to be a medical missionary,” a young man told me as I talked with him at length during the Congress. I encouraged him to consider tentmaker opportunities as a way of fulfilling that desire.
How do we respond when God calls us to do something for Him?
In July, Graham and other AFM personnel had the opportunity to attend the first GC Adventist Muslim Relations International Coaches’ Training held at Newbold College. On Sabbath, the group of 70, who had come from all over the world, divided into smaller units and went to various churches to conduct the Sabbath morning service and share presentations and testimonies in the afternoon about Adventist work being done among Muslims.
In his sermon that day, Graham spoke about four responses we can make to God’s call:
Like Jonah, we can run away and then reluctantly do as God asks.
Like Moses, we can respond with excuses but then go anyway.
Like the son in Jesus’ parable, we can say we will go but then not follow through.
Or, like Isaiah, we can willingly go and serve, recognising our own sinfulness and inabilities but allowing God to work through us.
When Graham first heard God’s call to serve with AFM as a field director, it didn’t take him long to come up with several excuses, especially the one concerning my health. I had lost virtually all use of my arms and legs. My vision was affected, and my speech was slurred. My doctors ruled out multiple sclerosis, but they were completely puzzled at what was happening to my body. Most of the time I was too weak to leave the house, and when I did I had to use a wheelchair. However, as we surrendered each challenge (excuse) to the Lord, God chose to heal me and provide the funding we needed to get us into the field. That was back in 2006, and God has provided ever since, reminding us that it is His work, and He will take responsibility for equipping and enabling us to serve. We have seen the promise of Philippians 4:19 fulfilled many times as God has supplied all our needs from His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.
Have you sensed God calling you to cross-cultural mission service? Have you delayed responding to the Holy Spirit’s prompting, reasoning that it’s not convenient, not the right time, or not a good thing for your family? In 1910, Dwight L. Moody called for young volunteers to become missionaries. One hundred responded to that appeal, and all of them went to the mission field. In 2004, 203 Adventist young people committed a tithe of their lives (seven years) to frontier mission service. Eight years later, only one had followed through on that commitment.
Don’t let anything hold you back from reaching the unreached millions of this world. Jesus is waiting to return. Respond as Isaiah did: “Here I am. Send me.”