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A call to ends-of-the-earth expatriate missionary service: Is it God's will for you?
Discovering if you have a mission
the WordAll of it! Not just a few favorite phrases
to the Holy SpiritThe inner
to God as sovereignHe often
leads by opening and closing doors
the counsel of
mature ChristiansChurch elders, pastor, a mentor, close Christian
--Joe Mattox, HEART Institute, Lake
"So you see, King Agrippa, I have not been disobedient to what was revealed to me from
heaven." -- Acts 26:19 (The Passion Translation)
When does God call people to long-term missionary service?
- 21% were called to missions as a result of a missions
education service in their local church
- 20% felt God calling them after listening to missionary
- 19% were called because of their own family's missions vision and conversations
- 10% heard God's call through reading books by or about missionaries
-- Terry Read, missionary and missions
Feeling that God is calling you to missionary service?
"How can they hear without someone preaching to them?" -- Romans
Take these steps to discover if He is calling you
- Read everything about missions and missionaries that you can get your hands
- Start by reading the story of Susan Fitkin's call to
missions. She's a lady who had a dramatic "call" to global evangelism, a call which led her
to be a mobilizer and vision-caster at home rather than an on-the-field missionary.
- Get involved in the missions mobilization and education program of your local
- Go hear every missionary speaker that you can. God
sometimes chooses that time to clarify His calling to young people.
- Talk to your pastor.
- Verbalizing your thinking with him and enlisting his prayer
support may help you sort through various issues.
- Throw yourself into active ministry through your local church.
- Learn to minister effectively in your own culture before you attempt cross-cultural
- Go on a short-term missions trip like SNU's "Commission
Unto Mexico." A cross-cultural mission trip will give you a taste of life on the mission field
and a good opportunity to sense God's leadership.
- Contact a missionary sending agency.
- Consider giving a year of volunteer service overseas before deciding whether you
should offer the rest of your life. Help for going on a one-year
- In her book, Venture of the
Heart, Lela Morgan says that early Nazarene missions leader H.F. Reynolds told a young would-be missionary: "Brother
Winans, we cannot send you to South America; but if God has called you, you will go or
"I may not end up being a goer, but I
can still play a role in reaching the world for Christ by being a sender."
-- Heather Hartwick, Nazarene Bible College student
God's leadership -- Key elements of a divine call
In reflecting on a case study used in Theology of Missions class, student Kimberly Jayne
noted that some common elements of a call into long-term or career ministry were:
- A metaphysical encounter with God which establishes a sense of calling (This
may as dramatic as the burning bush episode Moses had in
Exodus 3 or it may be a gentle whisper like the still small voice Elijah heard in 1
- A time of reflection or doubting of the calling
- An affirmation of the call through the Body of Christ (the Church)
- A willingness to obey that puts no conditions on where you are
willing to go or on what God may ask you to do
Wanting to know God's will? A stick figure diagram can
help you. . . [ read more ]
|How to know that you are called|
Evangelical Missions Quarterly . . .
- God delights to call his children in unique and personal ways. He doesn't
use a cookie-cutter template or a 10-step formula.
- Before revealing his unique callings, God always provides more general callings to His
people -- callings to salvation, holiness and obedience. If we miss these, we will never hear
God's more personal and peculiar callings.
- Hearing a call to ministry is not a measure of spiritual commitment.
- Calling is not a status to wear. Responding to a call always requires doing.
- Being called is not a reflection of giftedness. Calling is more than the sum of our gifts. It is
individually sculpted to incorporate both God's purposes and our passions
"Wherever He leads, I'll go"
In January of 1936, Southern Baptist songwriter B.B. McKinney was leading the music at
the Alabama Sunday School Convention in Clanton. The featured speaker was
R.S. Jones, McKinney's friend of many years who, because of ill health, had recently returned
from missionary service in Brazil.
Prior to one evening service, the two men were visiting over dinner when Jones revealed to
McKinney that his physicians were not going to allow him to return to South America. Asked
about his future plans, the missionary said, "I don't know, but wherever He leads I'll go."
The words stuck in McKinney's mind. Before the convention's evening session, he
had written both the words and music of this song. At the close of Rev. Jones' message,
McKinney related this story and then the just-written sang "Wherever He leads I'll go" for the
told by Billy Graham in Crusade Hymn
Stories, Hope Publishing Company, 1967.
How do you hear God's call?
-- Howard Culbertson
World missions course materials and syllabi
Howard Culbertson, 5901 NW 81st, Oklahoma City, OK 73132
| Phone: 405-740-4149
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