The called person is the right person
Whether you are a longtime reader of Today’s Pentecostal Evangel or this is the first World Missions Edition you have picked up, it probably won’t take you long to recognize the unique abilities and consistent determination of the missionaries we feature.
Assemblies of God missionaries are dedicated to using every available means to communicate the gospel. As a whole, the missionary family represents an amazing variety of skills, with hundreds of specializations all aimed at reaching people in every culture with the good news of Jesus Christ.
Perhaps you have considered investigating your own ministry potential on a foreign field, but you wonder if you really have what it takes to effectively serve outside your accustomed surroundings.
Our forefathers in the Assemblies of God recognized our Movement and its ministries around the world as Spirit-driven. The Holy Spirit guides the destiny of our mission as He speaks to the hearts of men and women. This opens the door for many avenues in the Lord’s work.
Having served in missions most of my life, I observe two primary characteristics of the successful missionary candidate.
First, that person needs to be sensitive to God’s voice. Numerous examples in both the Old and New Testaments confirm God is constantly speaking to men and women about their service to Him. God is always speaking. I guess the big question is, are we listening?
Often we confuse our inner desires with the prompting of the Holy Spirit. But when we put forth a sincere effort to discern God’s voice as He speaks to our hearts, He will communicate His guidance. Such an effort is founded on a study of God’s Word, regular times in prayer and faithful interaction with the local church. These should be fundamental practices for every Christian and the means God uses to sensitize our hearts to His voice.
Second, there must be a burden for the lost. The Lord asks us to pray that He would send forth workers into His harvest (Matthew 9:37,38). So often we come to God with a list of our own needs. Certainly, He expects us to entrust Him with our daily concerns. But when we pray about lost souls, we are praying with His priorities. When we pray for the lost, God opens doors for us to reach them. And He readily provides all of our needs as we serve Him.
Because we recognize Assemblies of God World Missions as a Spirit-driven outreach, we are not as concerned about strategies and manmade plans as we are in knowing what the mind of the Spirit is, what God wants, what He needs and whom He wants to employ.
We have marveled in recent years at the way God, in His time, has responded to the prayers of Christians, particularly as we mentioned certain countries and needs that burdened our hearts. The Spirit has provided the right people with the right gifts at the right time.
This divine selection and enablement is repeated in many ways across our world. Again and again we see men and women responding to pressing need.
I pray this World Missions Edition will grip your heart and give you a vision for how God can call you into His service. The called person is the right person.
L. JOHN BUENO
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